Religious Bullying

I have watched with interest as the debate in the U.S. has widened regarding the place of religion in the public and governmental sector. It is an entitlement debate.  Some believe, since it has always been that way it should always be that way. Therefore, those who would have it as they have always had it consider themselves in the right while demanding that those who oppose, for example, displays on government property, look to the precedent established, and get out of the way. Sounds like bullying to me!

The rights of individuals, religious or not, do not depend on a majority vote. Perhaps, if we took a vote, Christians would dominate. I get that. But that is not the way our U.S. Constitution was written. It was not written to appease the Christian public, but rather, it was written to protect everyone, religious or not, even the minority and all faiths. So, when someone wants to sponsor a symbol of some kind on government property it becomes an issue when a minority find it impinging on the idea of fair play. No one is suggesting religious types are to be prohibited from displaying their affections toward/about a religious symbol. The private marketplace is open to any and all to display their religious affections. Rent a storefront, lease a sign, sponsor a radio program, build a church, mosque or synagogue, but don’t expect the government to appear to sponsor religion. The appearance of sponsoring one religious entity over another is akin to entitlement often due to many years of impermissible “sweetheart” affiliations with government. If religious institutions have to muscle their way into the forefront of governmental affiliation during various holy days of the year then where did the Christian biblical edict go that encourages us “in honor preferring one another” or, “love thy neighbor as thyself”? Bullying is not an attractive suit for any Christian or religious person.

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About Ed Anderson

I am "non-religious", not an atheist as some suppose, since after reading what I have written many wonder if I believe in "God", I just don't have a name for the concept, "God", nor do I have an origination story or theological mystery tour to stretch your faith. (I have no proof of what I believe and I wonder if my belief in "God" is supportable as I have increasing doubts.) I just can't accept an inflexible point of view that says, "I know what you need, and I know what you should know and here it is, you can have it too." Religionists present yet another obstacle to finding "truth" as they claim to have succeeded exclusively in finding it. Having been a part of the religious scene for years it is clear to me how easily duped we are to believe in something we have no proof of, has caused an abundance of divisions, and "territorialized" people into believers and non-believers. Furthermore, my belief in "God" equates to the larger perspective which includes an awareness of "God" in everything. I speculate at times whether or not consciousness is "God" So, my belief in "God" does not necessarily match up to the Christian/Judaeo tradition of a being existing somewhere in the beyond or in one's "heart". If there is a "God" he/she/it could be anywhere and in anything. Though I believe in God, it is not a belief in the God of Scripture. Too many “holes” in Scripture to satisfy my inquiring mind. It may indeed point me in the right direction but I find it not only unreliable but full of plagiaristic thought and re-writing of some of history’s interesting solutions. I much prefer to trust the minds of men and women who conjecture on the basis of what we now know of our universe than those men and women who trust the minds of ancient spiritual guides who, in turn, contributed to a book allegedly “inspired” by God. It is all unprovable, either side of this argument, but I prefer to invest most of my thinking in current ideas rather than those that show little support in logic. Do I hear an "Amen"? View all posts by Ed Anderson

2 responses to “Religious Bullying

  • Jim Mathias

    The counterpoint is clear. The constitution did not establish freedom from religion but rather that religion would be free from government tyranny. If it were not so, then this debate would have existed from the establishment of said constitution when most religious symbols and acts in the government context were established. Today, the debate has evolved to the point where some have established a litmus test for personal faith by declaring that Christians can’t govern fairly because of their religious beliefs. Their intellect is then questioned if they believe anything in the Bible represents absolute truth. I know of a case where a young man was almost excluded from a prominent medical school because he was deemed too conservative on the basis of his religious beliefs.

  • Ed Anderson

    Government tyranny includes, but is not limited to, favoritism shown to one religion over another and where special status appears to grant that body access and privilege not granted others.

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