As I’ve written before, I’m not a huge fan of the FFRF, mainly because it seems to have become a political organ more than an organization that fights to remove religion from public spaces. Just look at all of the hysteria they attempted to create over the latest SCOTUS nominee for which they actually provided no evidence.
I did state that I liked FFRF’s mission to remove religion from the public square and yes, they have been very active with this as well. They are 1st amendment advocates, wanting the courts to enforce the Establishment Clause and they have a good record winning in the federal courts.
I happened upon an article today, Grouchy atheists should stop fighting to strip away historic landmarks, which caught my attention, of course. This story is about the FFRF fighting, in appeals court, to have Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, remove a Christian cross from their county seal.
The article is so chock-filled with attacks and falsehoods to actually be humorous if it weren’t for the fact that the writer is perfectly serious. In the first paragraph, she calls the FFRF a militant atheist group. I’m not sure how she was able to come to that conclusion, but suffice to say, that’s where the attacks and misinformation just begins.
The next paragraph is even more insidious where it’s stated unironically that “Ironically, no one else has ever complained about the seal, which has been on display for over 70 years.” How does this writer know that no one has ever complained about it before. Assertion without evidence. Poor journalism. And it’s hardly historic if it was created in the 1940’s and what is the evidence presented that it “represents the area’s early German settlers who fled persecution in Europe for religious freedom in America “. Well, another statement without any facts being presented. These are just the opening paragraphs!
Of course, she interviews, or has a statement from , a group that supposed represents religious freedom that goes on to exhaustingly give examples of other states that have what might be religious symbols on their flags. One example? Utah, which was stated “…and Utah’s has multiple images that recall the Mormon pioneers.” So a depiction of pioneers is now somehow a religious symbol. I guess we need to scrub every depiction of pioneers in America because it may represent a specific religion.
In fact, we should probably tear down the arch in St. Louis that is symbolic of that city having been the gateway to the west because it may also represent the persecution of Native Americans.
The silliness could go on forever. Note that nowhere in the article is there any statement from the FFRF. In fact, it doesn’t appear that there was an attempt to contact them at all. But of course, as the religious freedom representative said, why would anyone want to hear from the wicked witch of the west?
The bias of this article is in so many ways what atheists have come to expect from media. We’re militant, or wicked witches.
These same people that want to uphold their 1st Amendment rights are often loathe to understand that the first 2 clauses of that same amendment have to do with government establishing religion and also preventing government from prohibiting the free exercise thereof.
No one is preventing anyone from worshipping in their own way, it’s simply that no government, federal, state, or local should appear to prefer one belief over another. That’s all this case is about.
Exit question: Would this writer think the same if the symbol on the seal were a Star of David or Crescent and Star?