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Old 12-10-2012, 02:15 AM   #31
Xcelratr
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: So Cal - 310
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^^^. This.



Quote:
Originally Posted by NFRs2000nyc View Post
The government doesn't endorse any religion. The government serves the will of the people. If the "people" want to put a christmas tree in a public area, they have the right. If they want a menorah, they have the right. Again, I am Jewish, and do not associate a christmas tree or the word christmas with a religion. It is just a commercial American holiday. THe majority of American people, irrespective of their religion like christmas and want christmas trees and such. The will of the people (the majority) must be respected.
The Constitution sets out a framework and basic rights that cannot be violated, majority or not. Its a credit to the wisdom of the writers that they realized the majority has a habit of imposing their will on the minority, so some rights and freedoms had to be enshrined and made unassailable.

The separation of church and state was seen as so important that its the first clause of the First Amendment. It, and many other fundamental rights, are not subject to majority rule SPECIFICALLY because the Constitution writers knew they had to be preserved for all people, not just the majority.

People like to use the phrase "it's freedom OF religion, not freedom FROM religion." But govt, laws, public spaces and public resources must be kept separate from religion as much as possible. It's the only way to ensure no preferential treatment.

Now, when it comes to things like xmas trees, IMHO, they're far more cultural than religious. Christians didn't invent Christmas anyway, they just hijacked existing holidays, festivals and celebrations and turned them into what they needed them to be in order to promote their religion. No Bible verse says "thou shalt trim thine tree and kiss under thine mistletoe".

But as rdeseq pointed out so well, a nativity scene is blatantly Christian so it's not acceptable for govt space or resources to be used for one.
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