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The Ground Zero "Cross"

By WizenedSage (Galen Rose) ~

Carl S. recently shared with me a letter his wife received from the American Center for Law and Justice, a far right evangelical organization founded by Pat Robertson. The letter is a request for donations for the Committee to Protect the Ground Zero Cross.
A cross at Ground Zero.Image via Wikipedia
They want the addressee to enclose a check or money order and sign a document which reads:
“I stand alongside the American Center for Law and Justice in full support of the cross at Ground Zero. Consisting of two steel beams in the shape of a cross that survived the Twin Towers collapse on 9/11, it has deep meaning to those personally impacted by the terrorist attacks on that fateful day, and to all freedom-loving citizens of the United States. It serves as a powerful remembrance and should not fall victim to ridiculous, anti-God complaints by atheist organizations.

The claim that they are suffering both physical and emotional damages from the existence of the cross is ridiculous - so is the lawsuit. The cross is a constitutionally sound memorial, not a pawn in a political game. Don’t let atheists re-write the Constitution. It’s time to reject this anti-God strategy.”

So, they tell us that, “. . . it has deep meaning to those personally impacted by the terrorist attacks. . . “ Notice they don’t say SOME of those personally impacted, because they don’t really recognize those of us for which the cross has no positive meaning.

Also notice: “. . . it has deep meaning . . . to all freedom-loving citizens of the United States.” The implication is that if the cross doesn’t have “deep meaning” for us, then we are not freedom-loving citizens.

The text insists that the cross, “. . . should not fall victim to ridiculous, anti-God complaints by atheist organizations.” Those who object to a breach of the Constitution, then, are being anti-god. It couldn’t be that we are simply opposed to violations of the Constitution. No, if we object, on any grounds, then we are being anti-god. Of course, this kind of rhetoric was carefully designed to whip up the self-righteous anger of the Christian faithful. We atheists aren’t just objecting to government support of public religious symbolism, you see, we are opposing their god, a much more serious offense.

While the church-state separation organizations are objecting to a government sponsored religious symbol, in accordance with the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights, the ACLG would have people believe that atheists are attempting to “re-write the Constitution.” In fact, I think we atheists are mostly satisfied with the Constitution as it stands, we just want it obeyed. This is not a subtle distinction, it is a huge difference! It seems this letter is just one distortion after another. Now who would have thought that good Christians would be so devious?

On the front of the envelope mailed to the addressee, in huge letters, is written, “A Cross Rose From The Ashes At Ground Zero” Now I admit I wasn’t there, but I very strongly suspect that the cross did not RISE from the ashes, it merely happened to be left standing (actually, partially propped up by other rubble) when the ashes cleared. But, I suppose, if you can believe that Jesus rose from the dead, then you can believe just about anything. Of course, practically everything looks like a cross if you’re programmed to see them; telephone poles, the letter ‘T,’ you name it. In fact, it would be amazing if nothing loosely resembling a cross was found in the rubble.

This letter angered me big time. These Christians just refuse to concede an inch. They refuse to acknowledge that their cross would be a poke in the eye of all non-Christians, a constant reminder of the divisiveness of religion and the dominance of Christianity in our melting-pot nation, a nation of many nationalities and religions, and of people with no religion. And they refuse to concede that for the government of New York to allow this “cross” to stand, acknowledged as a religious symbol, would amount to an “establishment of religion,” a particular religion even, which is expressly forbidden by our Bill of Rights because it divides people and sets up one group above another in the eyes of our government, a government of ALL the people. These are people who are so utterly convinced that they have The Truth that they feel chosen, “called” even, to shove it down the throats of everyone else. Because Christianity is the majority religion in this country, the Christians seem to think they have every right to use the cross as a club to pummel everyone else.

How in hell do we deal reasonably with people who have chosen faith over reason? Sometimes it feels almost as useless as prayer.