Driving around yesterday, I heard a Portland talk-show host get enraged about a lawsuit that seeks to have a Christian cross removed from the Mojave National Preserve in California.
Right-winger Lars Larson said that a plywood box has been placed around the cross. "Unbelievable. How can this be happening in America!"
What's unbelievable is that there would be any controversy over removing an obvious religious symbol from public property -- regardless of whether the cross was put up by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
The National Park Service denied a request to put up a Buddhist memorial. So it looks like only Christians who die for their country deserve respect.
Ridiculous. The United States isn't a Christian country. It's a country with lots of Christians. Big difference.
This editorial gets it exactly right:
Religious symbolism of this kind on government land is, by its very nature, exclusionary. Allowing only a cross to stand over the memorial sends a message to Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and others that their sacrifices, and their family members’ sacrifices, are not appreciated or mourned.
It also sends a message that state and church are intertwined. A single cross does not, by itself, mean America has an established religion, but if the Supreme Court stops caring that the government is promoting a particular religion, we will be down the path toward having one.
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