Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Fear of God...In the Most Unhealthy, Silly Ways

Perhaps it's just the spirit of Halloween. Why else would bureaucrats, politicians and journalists be so spooked, so jittery, so downright fraidycat about Christianity...even the briefest references to God?

Here's a few examples:

* The National Park Service "rearranging" a display of the Washington Monument so that the model of the building would conceal the Latin words “Laus Deo” (meaning “Praise Be to God”).

* Responding to the question as to whether those who support the idea of a literal six-day creation should be called "stupid", Ken Gallinger (the newspaper's "ethics columnist") responded, "Creationism is not the first nonsense the Christian Church has unleashed upon the world. And, unless you factor in the risk of turning your brain into silly putty, it's considerably less dangerous than such other ecclesiastical offerings as anti-Semitism, misogyny, the ‘domination' of nature, or gay-bashing ... all of which are solidly rooted in Christianity's Holy Book."

* Under legal threat from a church-state separation group, the Akron City Council has dropped its long-standing practice of opening meetings with the Lord's Prayer. Council President Marco Sommerville said the prayer was most likely started to show citizens that council members looked for outside guidance. But after the advocacy group Americans United for Separation of Church and State threatened litigation, council members decided to shed tradition, choosing instead to pray privately before meetings.

* One hundred twenty-five national cemeteries can no longer honor military veterans families with a flag-folding recitation ceremony because one person complained that the ritual mentions God.

Thousands of military families request the flag-folding recitation ceremony for deceased loved ones. It’s unofficial, but especially meaningful to families that want to honor a soldier’s sacrifice. But the recitations were banned by the VA until further notice because, as Rees Lloyd with the Defense of Veterans Memorials Project of the American Legion puts it, one person was offended. “One disgruntled narcissist has caused a complete ban affecting 300-million Americans honor our war-dead and our comrades, veterans and we think its an outrage and we intend to fight it.”

The complainer’s name isn’t known, the VA isn’t commenting, nor is it releasing language of the ban. Romey Kilgore with United We Serve calls it a slap in the face to our military. “Our American veterans; they've fought and died for our beliefs and our right to express them and we owe them nothing less than that.”

* And, of course, I'm not even listing here examples of more overt, more deadly persecutions against Christians which are going on every day around the world. To help you keep up on those (at least a bit), I will again mention a few of the sources I've found the most helpful: Voice of the Martyrs; Forum 18; Persecution Blog; Compass Direct News; International Christian Concern; Christian Freedom; the Hudson Institute; Open Doors; and the "Persecution News" section of OneNewsNow (located far down the right hand column).