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The Clash Of Symbols: Religious Leaders Stake Out Turf In Public Square

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Ian David Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:16 AM
Original message
The Clash Of Symbols: Religious Leaders Stake Out Turf In Public Square
The Clash Of Symbols: Religious Leaders Stake Out Turf In Public Square

Should government buildings feature religious symbols? Some prominent and not so prominent religious leaders seem to think so.

Last Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI told the Union of Italian Catholic Jurists that religious symbols should be allowed in government offices, schools, courtrooms, hospitals, prisons and other public places. According to the Catholic News Service, the pope denounced a false secularism and said, At the foundation of such a concept lies an a-religious vision of life, thought and morality: a vision in which there is no place for God, or for a mystery that transcends pure reason, or for a moral law of absolute value, in force at all times and in all situations.

Meanwhile, here in the United States, a group of Religious Right activists announced plans to try to place Christian Nativity scenes at public buildings around the country. The Religion News Service reported that the National Clergy Councils Rob Schenck and others are pushing Project Nativity, which seeks to place depictions of Jesus birth in front of government buildings.

<snip>

Public buildings belong to everyone, not just Christians. It is wrong and in the United States unconstitutional for the government to display religious symbols in ways that seem to endorse one faith over others. It isnt discrimination against religion to leave sectarian symbols out of our public buildings. Rather, its a recognition that our nation includes some 2,000 different faith traditions. Public buildings should welcome adherents of all of them, as well as those who chose no spiritual path.

America has avoided the violent interfaith conflict that has troubled much of the world by keeping our government out of religious matters. We shouldnt deviate from that wise path now.



More:
http://blog.au.org/2006/12/the_clash_of_sy.html
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:25 AM
Response to Original message
1. People should reread the US Constitution.
There is no reference to any religion in the founding document.

The government serves all who live under its dominion, and because not all who live under it agree with respect to religion, it's simply common sense that the government should not endorse any religion unless it wants to invite religious conflict.
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Ian David Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:43 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. "Endowed by their creator..."
Notice This makes a special effort to avoid mentioning a Deity.

It doesn't say, "endowed by God with certain unalienable rights."

It doesn't say, "endowed by their Deity with certain unalienable rights."

It doesn't say, "endowed by Jesus with certain unalienable rights."

It says "endowed by their creator..." and it's a deliberate effort to use religion-free language. They didn't even capitalize the word "Creator" to signify that the creator is "God," the way you capitalize "Him" when using the pronoun to talk about "God."



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TechBear_Seattle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:38 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Is NOT in the United States Constitution
It is in the Declaration of Independence, which is a piece of revolutionary rhetoric to excuse the (at that time) heresy of taking up arms against God's Appointed Representative On Earth.
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TechBear_Seattle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:42 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. There are two religious references in the United States Constitution
The first is found in Article VI, para. 3:

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States. (Emphasis added.)


The second comes at the bottom:

Done in convention by the unanimous consent of the states present the seventeenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven and of the independence of the United States of America the twelfth. (Emphasis added.)


The first prohibits any and all religious requirements for holding office. The second is a formulaic statement of a date.
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bryant69 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:45 AM
Response to Original message
5. Why is The War on Christmas being fought mainly by fundementalists?
Because they are the ones best suited to making hay off of it.

Bryant
Check it out --> http://politicalcomment.blogspot.com
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Kerrytravelers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:54 AM
Response to Original message
6. Ah, words of wisdom from our dope of a Pope.
This Catholic, for one, thinks this pope ought to take his windbag of foolishness and shove it. This is the same guy who played a role in the whole "Kerry shouldn't take Communion" nonsense. And I do recall a little skirmish with some Muslims not too long ago. Anyone else recall that?

Oh, my. This guy needs to had in the hat and fancy shoes now. We can't take much more of his stupidity.
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