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Old 02-15-2012, 04:11 PM   #11
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And what about free speech, homosexuals can throw a parade? But Christians cant display a nativity scene?


Arguing with the left is like arguing with a piece of hardwood. just as dense.
Try reading MC's post again. It explains this aspect of your constitution so clearly that a piece of hardwood could understand it.
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Old 02-15-2012, 04:24 PM   #12
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And what about free speech, homosexuals can throw a parade? But Christians cant display a nativity scene?
Apples and oranges.

Any group wanting to have a parade can submit an application for a permit and have a parade. The streets are public and paid for and, in allowing the parade, the state takes no stand on any particular opinions that the applicant group has or holds. We have all kinds of parades here held by all sorts of groups and organizations and they are all peaceful events and they all make the news.

Placing a religious scene or any kind on state property with state permission is tantamount to the state endorsing religion. This is why students can't be forced to say the Pledge in schools--its called a coercive effect. The courts have ruled repeatedly on this. The law is clear.

I'm not trying to pick a fight, but I've been a school administrator and taken several legal and school law classes. You have to understand the rights of the adults and children under your protection so that you don't violate them and end up on the news, like a lot of school administrators do so frequently.
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Old 02-15-2012, 04:28 PM   #13
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I agree with the spirit of what you are saying. However, the Constitution is pretty clear and separation of church and state exists at the federal level and is not something in which local jurisdictions can either opt into or out of.
While I do not care to involve myself in political debate. I wish everyone would actually go and read the letter Jefferson wrote to the Danbury Baptist Church in 1802. The "wall of separation," is from this letter, it is not mentioned ANY WHERE in the Constitution.

The 1st ammendment is very clear also, it protects the Church in 2 ways. 1.) Shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion ( ie will not require everyone to attend a certain church or practice a certain religion) 2.) Guarantees the free expression of religion by her citizens. IMHO, note ... this is an opinion, too often in an effort to apply the first protection (often incorrectly), we are denied the second. What a shame.
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Old 02-15-2012, 06:25 PM   #14
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Apples and oranges.
Yet a menorah may be displayed on public lands and property.
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Old 02-15-2012, 08:03 PM   #15
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MC I would like for you to point out to me a law or a supreme court decision that hold displays of nativity scenes on public property unconstitutional.

I offer,
"Under current law, government entities (city halls, courts, public schools, etc) can generally acknowledge religious holidays so long as they do not create an impression of endorsement of religion by the government.

For instance, local towns can display a nativity scene so long as they include a fair amount of non-religious, or secular, symbols such as reindeer, candy canes, toy soldiers and so on, along with the nativity scene.

If the display does not include such non-religious symbols, it may be seen as an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion.

Just because a nativity scene or other religious display appears on government property does not necessarily mean that it is owned or is being displayed by the government, using tax dollars. Many local and some state governments have within their boundaries public areas whereby citizens are permitted to erect displays, including those of a religious nature, of their own choice. If you observe a religious display on government property, you may want to consider the following steps to investigate the situation:"

American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio :: Nativity Scenes & Holiday Displays
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Old 02-16-2012, 06:40 AM   #16
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Just a point of comparison with across the pond. We get an awful lot of stories about such-and-such has been 'banned by local councils' or 'schools aren't allowed to do such-and-such.'

For example, it was widely reported a few years back that the nursery rhyme 'Baa baa black sheep' had been changed to 'Baa baa rainbow sheep' as part of some council-backed non-discriminatory ruling. Every so often, this resurfaces on the UK internet forums, despite the fact that it never happened. It turns out that some schools used it as a verse within the traditional song, as a vocabulary-building exercse.

Another case was the allegation that the Health and Safety Executive had banned a traditional game called 'conkers' in schools. This turned out to be the nothing to do with government. A few schools had indeed banned the game, but this was based on fears of litigation from parents if kids got injured.

The point is that there are some sections of the press - or individuals - that are hell-bent on constructing straw men. Their agenda is to whip up reactionary rage about the 'state that the UK/US/world is in'. I'm not saying that this is the case in the nativity case - just that a general principle should be to exercise caution before accepting the claims of apocalyptic emails like this. Exactly what has been banned? By whom? Is it a county/state wide principle, or a locally instituted one?

And: Are foetuses used in research? Does the author mean 'embryos'? There's a distinction. If the label of criminal has been entirely replaced with 'sick people', why is the penal system bursting at the seams?

On a separate point, members of the heterosexual majority have, of course, every right to stage a 'straight pride' parade. But I bet the costumes wouldn't be as good
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Old 02-16-2012, 07:53 AM   #17
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On a separate point, members of the heterosexual majority have, of course, every right to stage a 'straight pride' parade. But I bet the costumes wouldn't be as good
I lol'd.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:03 AM   #18
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MC I would like for you to point out to me a law or a supreme court decision that hold displays of nativity scenes on public property unconstitutional.
The Supreme Court has actually weighed in on this issue three times.

Religious Displays on Public Property
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:04 AM   #19
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The cross the nativity scene, hard to draw much of a distinction.

"The Ohio government believed it had first amendment grounds for prohibiting the the KKK’s erection of a cross on such property.

The display was held to be private religious speech, protected also by the first amendment in its free speech clause. The local government felt the display would be understood by other citizens as being erected and mainted by them, but the Supreme Court declared that since Ohio could demand that ALL displays on the property be identified as those of private citizens, they had not presented a compelling reason for turning down the KKK’s permit."

I do wish that a group other than the kkk had won this decision.


"Berger wrote the majority opinion for the case, stating that in the context of the whole scene, the nativity scene did not constitute advocacy of a particular religion, the crèche held a secular purpose, and that a symbol almost two millenniums old cannot "taint" an exhibition, and that a "crèche is no more an advancement of religion than a recognition that the name of the holiday itself derives from "Christ’s Mass." (Gaustad 1999, direct quotation from Lynch v. Donnelly, 465 U.S. 1984.)"

Can you explain to me how the court found that the nativity scene was unconstitutional?

MC, Please remember your comment

"No, you can't put a nativity scene in a public park because not all citizens are Christian. Again, separation of church and state. Put a nativity scene on your front lawn if you want to see one. "

Apparently you can, legally display a nativity scene on public property. In fact the government can with the addition of some other holiday displays.

In my research, I have found that private displays of a nativity scene on public property, may be displayed "as is"
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:26 AM   #20
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I'm not saying that this is the case in the nativity case - just that a general principle should be to exercise caution before accepting the claims of apocalyptic emails like this. Exactly what has been banned? By whom? Is it a county/state wide principle, or a locally instituted one?

My argument has nothing to do with the letter only that, some believe for "what ever reason"(other than the law) that the display of religious scenes on public property are not allowed under our constitution.

The Supreme Court of the the United States of America has ruled on this many times.
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