The First Amendment Is Not Just For Christians

religious-freedomV2There is a fine line between Conservatism and Libertarianism as I see it.  There are many similarities, but one of the major differences is that Conservatism very often champions the cause of Christianity.  As a matter of fact, many of the policy decisions are based around Christian theology and morality.  The supposed War on Christmas is based on the fact that Conservatives see their religious views as being under attack, when more often than not, the case is that other groups are simply asking for equal treatment, which is supposed to be guaranteed by the First Amendment.

America was founded mostly by Christians, it is true.  The major holidays celebrated in the United States are centered around Christian holidays. I know that most people, this time of year, get a nice long break from work due to the supposedly sacred nature of the celebration of Christmas.  And what is Christmas without Christ?  Take away this central figure, and you’re either celebrating Hanukkah or just celebrating the Winter Solstice, which was the Pagan Holiday that Christmas supposedly replaced many hundreds of years ago.

Christians, who often become zealous supporters of the first amendment when they perceive their own views have come under attack, begin to draw lines in the sand when it comes to the expression of the religious views of others.  Take, for instance, the Florida State Capital’s Refusal to allow a Satanic group to set up a display in the rotunda – a rotunda that has played host to a myriad of other religious displays.  The reason for refusal?  The display has been deemed by The Department of Management Services as “Grossly offensive.”

One must ask, whose place is it to determine what is and isn’t offensive?  How offensive must something be in order to merit refusal?  How many must be offended in order for it to be unallowable?  What about the offense committed against the freedom of religious expression by the Satanists?  Isn’t it just as much their right to have a display something in a public venue as any other religious group?  If you answer no to this last question you must have a very good reason otherwise you are nothing but a hypocrite.

But this is a problem you face when religious displays are allowed in public buildings like this.  You run into the matter of it being easier to say no to every one than have to deal with the myriad of requests that will come in from any number of various groups who demand the equal treatment that is protected under the Constitution of the United States.  It doesn’t matter how much of a minority the religious group might be, the First Amendment is supposed to prohibit the promotion of any religion over any other, regardless of how offensive they might be.


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