Religious Oppression

Just when you figure it should be safe to have symbols of Christmas on a building, it's not. So what caused Sonoma County California to go running around taking all of the Christmas decorations down? Was it a huge protest numbering into the thousands? Was it a court ordered mandate after a lengthy trial? Did the local news assail them for weeks until they relented? No. In what I consider an indefensible and heinous oppression of religious expression, Sonoma County caved in to the will of a single individual: Irv Sutley, a disabled 65-year-old Marine veteran who said the symbols were "extremely offensive" and part of the "cult" of Christianity.

In reading up on this guy's history, it seems he's made a habit of being a one man Hitler squad hell bent on denying not just Christians their right to religious expression, but Buddhists and Jews as well. People like this frankly have no business being allowed to violate the rights of others in such a foul and heinous way. Were he to come to my city, I'd be all over the city council to have the man arrested on the spot and charged with violating my Constitutional rights - as should the citizens of Sonoma County, who populate the government buildings this man targeted with his campaign of hatred and spite.

I have nothing but contempt for anyone, regardless of whether they served or not, who goes around doing such utterly despicable things. Especially during this time of year. More proof that we are in fact engaged in a Culture War for the very survival of our way of life and value system in the US.

To Irv Sutley, you are an evil, bitter, and hateful old man. Please move to Russia as soon as you can.

To everyone else reading this, have a Merry Christmas.
.........................
RIP United States of America

July 1776 - November 2012.

       
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Posted on Dec 23, 2009 8:24 pm by Samson in: | 14 comment(s) [Closed]
Comments
HEH, what more can i say, but Merry Christmas guys and girls and a save and happy new your to you all.

Peace out,

The_Fury.

       
To be sure, the man does have the benefit of being legally right in the matter, considering that the symbols in question were on government land and we do have a Constitutional amendment dealing with such things.

That said, speaking as a lifelong athiest myself, there are better things to get worked up about than Christmas trees.

But then, I celebrate a pretty secular form of the holiday myself, so what do I know.

Happy Christmas and a Merry New Year, y'all.

       
He's only "legally" right if you throw the 1st Amendment out with last week's trash.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


The last I checked, Sonoma County is not Congress, and putting up angels and stars is not passing laws establishing a religion. So I'm sorry, but you lose, and Mr. Sutley is still a hateful evil bastard who is actually the one in violation if you truly wish to ignore the whole part about Congress since *HE* is effectively prohibiting the free exercise of religion.

People toss around this Constitutional argument all the time but never bother to realize it has no application to anyone other than the federal government, and only applies to state government by way of the 14th Amendment. Local government is not technically bound by the provisions other than through judicial precedent.

       
Being Jewish, I too get a little tired of having Christmas shoved down my throat everywhere and in every way conceivable each year, but this guy is a bit overboard about it even in my opinion. The article Samson linked to concludes with this guy boasting that he's not done because someone erected a steel cross as a memorial which he also finds offensive.. As for the constitutional aspects of this, Samson is right that the constitution only applies to the federal government (and the state government for certain aspects) but not really to local level governments, but it is still expected by most citizens of this country that government will be maintained separately from the church, despite the fact that it was founded upon the church...

I hope you Christians have a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year and, Dwip, I hope you have a happy yule or whatever you're celebrating instead.

       
Well here's the thing Conner. This guy isn't just warring on Christmas. Guys like him all over the country are warring on everything, including Jewish stuff. They'll hide behind the false shield of the 1st Amendment, but what they're really doing is pushing the agenda of their own religion instead - atheism. He's free to be an atheist too. Got no problem with that. What he's not free to do though is tell me I can't put stars up on trees in buildings my tax money pays for.

       
While I agree with you in principle (this guy's got no right to be forcing you to not celebrate your religious holidays, or at least he shouldn't have any such right), I'd imagine he could (and would) easily turn that argument around and say you've got no right to put up stars on trees in buildings his tax money paid for either. But on the more general subject, yes, I think this guy, and others like him, are going way beyond what our founding fathers ever might've intended under the pretense of upholding the first amendment which was not meant to be abused, er, used this way at all. After all, the same founding fathers who said that there must be a separation of church and state established such things as our national anthem, the pledge of allegiance, and so on. They're the ones who commissioned the construction of Washington, DC including the various religious and masonic symbolism that's been built into the city itself, despite the silly conspiracy theories that may have spawned, it can't be denied that most of our founding fathers were freemasons and felt that both god and masonry were vital to their everyday lives enough so that symbolism from both made it into nearly everything they did, including the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. The whole separation of church and state thing was to establish that the church and the government weren't connected like they were in England, not to abolish the church from the daily practices of government nor to force secularity on school children and certainly not to establish a foothold for atheistic zealots. So much for best intentions, eh? Welcome to the age of dis-enlightenment, where we establish a supreme court and charge it's members with the task of finding loopholes in our nation's highest law so that we can "legally" become a communist state lead by the idiots for the foolish masses...

       
Technically the founding fathers did not put forth a separation of church and state. They merely put forward that the government was forbidden from officially endorsing one over another as the "state religion" like you find in all those backward Islamic holes. It was the US Supreme Court during the 1950s and 1960s that took it upon themselves to interpret things in such a way that government was forbidden to decorate buildings with starts or allow kids to pray in class. It's no coincidence that once that got started the moral fiber of this country disintegrated.

       
Well, "all those backward Islamic holes" are far from the only places you'd find a state religion. England had one at the time of the formation of this country (I don't recall if that's ever officially changed), Russia has had one, in a sense, for centuries though arguably the state religion in Russia is atheism these days whereas it once was an orthodox Christianity...

Alas, that's what I was saying about our Supreme Court, though I hadn't realized that the decisions involved were handed down that long ago.. are you sure there haven't been more since then too?

I can't begin to argue that point. I don't know exactly when the moral fiber of this country started to deteriorate, but I agree that the cause of it is clearly government related. When schools were forbidden to teach creationism, then evolution, and were required to teach sex ed.. when an agency was created to police for the protection of children and then left to autonomously decide which parents were bad people and how strongly to react to them... when government was told to stop allowing religious influences to guide their laws but to instead try to appease everyone based on individual feelings and made it a crime to offend someone (first sexually, now we're working hard on religiously)... how could anyone have honestly expected our children to remain stable and properly raised and, therefore, for society in general to continue to uphold the beliefs and practices and to continue to demonstrate the moral fortitude of generations before those events?

       
Anonymous [Anon] said:
Comment #9 Dec 25, 2009 7:00 pm
England had one at the time of the formation of this country (I don't recall if that's ever officially changed)


The Queen is the Head of State and the head of the Church of England, so it hasn't really changed.

       
Well, "all those backward Islamic holes" are far from the only places you'd find a state religion.


Well of course they are, but this is the Empire of the Iguanadons. What religious group do I pick on the most here? :)

And yes, I will definitely concede that places like Russia and China have state religions - atheism. Of course, they'll rail on about how atheism isn't a religion, but it has all the necessary elements to fit the definition. So let them stew on that technicality.

As far as the anti-chruch court rulings, the ones that did the most damage and set the worst precedents took place in the 50s and 60s. Everything else after that was nickel and dime stuff meant to finish off the last pockets of resistance. All it would have taken was a lawyer with the balls and proper constitutional knowledge to argue a good case 50 years ago and it might never have been allowed to get this far.

The Queen is the Head of State and the head of the Church of England, so it hasn't really changed.


Meet the new England, same as the old England.

       
Samson said:

Well of course they are, but this is the Empire of the Iguanadons. What religious group do I pick on the most here? :)

Well, okay, there is that. :D

Samson said:

Of course, they'll rail on about how atheism isn't a religion, but it has all the necessary elements to fit the definition. So let them stew on that technicality.

I've heard that argument before. I also think Atheism is a religion that is based upon the presumption that there is no god thus there need be no church because there's nothing to worship, but that doesn't change that it's still a religion. Dwip, if you'd care to argue the point, I'd be happy to hear a new argument for a change on the subject. ;)

Samson said:

All it would have taken was a lawyer with the balls and proper constitutional knowledge to argue a good case 50 years ago and it might never have been allowed to get this far.

Are you saying it's too late? You figure we've exceeded all hope and nothing can be done to save this country now? :(

Anonymous said:

The Queen is the Head of State and the head of the Church of England, so it hasn't really changed.

Okay, I didn't think it had changed, but I wasn't sure. I've studied a bit of history and I try to be familiar with some limited current world politics, but I am very far from knowing it all. Honestly, I'd be pretty surprised if England was even just one of few countries that has a state religion like that, let alone if it was the only one, today. (Even setting aside the national "lack of religion" in Russia and China.)

       
Well you got the Russian Orthodox Church, which is banned in Moscow, and the Greek Orthodox Church, which isn't really run by a bunch of Greeks, and The Mexican Mau Maus, who don't exist but really ought to.....

Overall, the Chucrh of England is the real deal, and the best place left to see the traditional Catholic Mass. ;)

       
BTW, I live in Mass., and it is Catholic.

Never mind religion, what we need is an amendment separating government and organized crime! (Maybe we should just move the state away from Rhode Island)

Be sure to include bankers, doctors and snowplow drivers with the racketeers.


People that think we should all believe in the same thing are scary, but not as scary as those that think we should all believe in nothing. I like all religions, and think they're good for people (except, of course, that one were afraid to mention).

       
I'm not sure that government and organized crime can be separated, for example, look at the treasury department...

While I can understand, whether I agree or not, the inclusion of bankers and doctors.. snowplow drivers??

"that one were afraid to mention" ...would that be the Church of Satan (the one in California founded by Alister Crowley)? or perhaps The Church of Scientology (created by Ron L. Hubbard)? or did you mean Islam ...or another one altogether? Sorry, it just gets confusing when there are so many scary ones to choose from and you won't let us name the one we're discussing. ;)

       
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