Saturday, October 10, 2009
The ACLU, the Mojave Cross and Democracy
Consider the comments of Diane Ravitch, author of Making Good Citizens:
Education and Civil Society: "Democracy is a process, a way of living and
working together. It is evolutionary, not static. It requires cooperation,
compromise, and tolerance among all citizens. Making it work is hard, not easy.
Freedom means responsibility, not freedom from responsibility."
Without mutual respect and compromise Democracy becomes impossible.
One of the reasons the ACLU attack on the WWI memorial in the Mojave -which as I
is shamefully hidden under a wooden shroud- is so dangerous for Democracy is
that the attack lacks all reason, all respect especially for the long lost
Doughboys on 1917-1919 who made the supreme sacrifice.
If the ACLU attack on our memory and our commemorations is allowed to succeed
then every public memorial and every public inscription of the past that is
unacceptable by the lights of the ACLU is in danger.
As I see it the ACLU-Secular-left attack on Judeo-Christian tradition and
Christianity in particular is a form of punishment and revenge that totally
lacks any respect for the memory of fallen comrades who died in service of their
country. If this form of persecution is sanctioned by the Court, the Federal
government would be denying the free exercise of religion of a community.
Federal lands supposedly belong TO THE PEOPLE not to the State. No Federal
money ws spent in putting up the cross and no state, Federal or local money is
spent in its maintenance. And in fact the land upon which the cross sits is
now private land as well! No one is required to attend services there nor pay
any money. But the case of the ACLU is ,essentially, that a man in Oregon who
has never been to Mohave MIGHT be offended if he HAPPENED to NOTICE a cross in
public view and HE MIGHT interpret this as an unconstitutional establishment of
a "religion". This is the new doctrine of the veto power of one; just forget
tradition, custom and popular sovereignty! We might as well install Czars and
Commissars for life to run all our affairs.
It so happens that the vast majority of Americans are against this 'absolutist'
(and in my view totalitarian an intolerant) view of Christian symbols in public
places. (over 70% in recent polls).
It seems the ACLU-Secular-Left want and religious activity or symbolism to be
prohibited in speech, public life, community life and absolutely restricted to
whispers in a darkened private sphere. Every year we recall the great moral
tragedy of our culture of death which has accepted tens of millions of
abortions as no big deal. So we place hundreds of white crosses on Church
property and display signs -not of hatred or accusation -but of sorrow and
prayer for what seems to many of us a human holocaust on a scale which very soon
will surpass the total number of dead in both world wars. You may not agree
with this point of view but this is a valid and reasonable viewpoint and a
peaceful free exercise of religion. If our people were to put these crosses on
your lawn or glue them to the wall of Clinica Sierra Vista I would be opposed to
such an illegal trespass and lack of respect for the property of others.
What happens when we do this? Radicals-offended by seeing these symbolic
crosses next to a public highway- trespass and vandalize the crosses tearing
them down and marking them with swastikas. In this they are no different than
the fanatical iconoclasts of another era. And the message they send is very
clear. They hate and if they could get away with it they would burn
our church to the ground. Similarly anyone who supported Prop 8 was
considered "hateful" and "bigoted". But almost all the acts of violence and
intimidation were performed by homosexual activists and the Left such as the
assault of an old lady whose crime was to carry a pro proposition 8 placard.
Other groups vandalized signs on people's lawns. Other groups publicized hotel
and restaurant owners who contributed to the pro prop 8. And once again the
CTA/NEA -without consulting its rank and file- blithely gave over 400,000 to the
Anti prop 8 campaign. Indirectly they used taxpayers funds to support their
philosophy or "their doctrines." There is very little Democracy in these actions
in my opinion and a measure of Bossism and totalitarianism.
What is happening because of the constant attacks by the Secular Left on
traditional symbols and values (traditional marriage in the monogamous
Judeo-Christian tradition) is great anger and frustration and a sense that SOME
institutions -which are tax-supported- have become are are becoming ENEMY
Thirty years ago I never heard the contempt and distrust that people express
towards the state government and the Federal government. One sixth of all
hospital patients are taken care of in Catholic hospitals and now there is great
concern that nurses, doctors and hospital personnel will be REQUIRED to peform
abortions once Obamacare is passed. Already in California there is no parental
consent and children as young as 11 or 12 can have access to birth control and
abortions without the consent and knowledge of their parents. Already
pharmacists MUST prescribe RU-486 abortion pills or risk losing their jobs.
What is actually happening is pharmacists cover for each other or discourage the
use of RU-486 by not having it on hand (young women who want it typically want
it IMMEDIATELY). I never thought I could ever come to the day where I would
ever feel that the day seems to becoming when I have to revoke my allegiance to
America and her government but we seem to be closer to that possibility every
My only solace is that things are far worse in Britain and Canada than they are
here. Our system of Federalism and local control of schools gives us some
breathing space. And yet some believe that the Federal government should be
given more authority and more power over our lives and tax us even more than
they do so that elites can impose their 'correct' views on the rest of us.
And Monday is so-called Columbus Day. At one time the celebration of Columbus
Day like the public celebration of Christmas was seen as proof of religious
tolerance towards Catholics and Italians and Hispanics in particular. Lincoln
knew the significance of this respect and hence the Columbus doors in the
Capitol which celebrate Queen Isabella and Columbus for opening the path to the
New World. Of course, in California we no longer celebrate Columbus day and it
is not a school holiday and you know why. Native American and Chicano Activists
have spread anti-Spanish and anti-Christian propaganda to the effect that
Columbus and even the Missionary founders of California are NO BETTER THAN
GENOCIDAL MANIACS and KILLERS like the Nazis! The Black Legend is alive in well
in California’s public schools and it seems to me nothing more than a veiled
Anti-Catholicism and anti- "White Culture". That is the true meaning of
multiculturalism to accuse, to teach hatred and resentment and to divide
Americans and hence weaken the Union.
Once again their is no respect for history, tradition and the cherished beliefs
of a large portion of American citizens. What's next? Will they dynamite the
Columbus doors in Congress. Will they go on a campaign to eradicate every
inscription and public monument they don't like? We can expect continued
attacks in the coming years.
What radicals like this really are doing is weakening our national union step by
step and playing a dangerous game as they flirt with the politics of ethnic
grievances and political separatism. They are not willing, as most of the
American public are, to live and let live. They are not peacefully coexisting,
they are not compromising, they are not respecting long held customs and
traditions but insist in their proto-totalitarian way that there is ONLY ONE
WAY...THEIR WAY and THEIR interpretation. They are in fact very illiberal
liberals. They will force their way by hook or by crook via the Courts or by
steady political pressure regardless of the long term consequences. They are
acting very irresponsibly and with this irresponsibility they are contributing to a
polarization of political view that could eventually lead to violent
confrontation, bitter factionalism, even Civil War.
And that is the price the will be paid for having a total lack of civic virtue,
moderation and tolerance. Democracy means rule by the people -popular
sovereignty-. It is not rule by ACLU lawyers or Dukes for life (Federal Judges).
Any attempt to muzzle the American people and impose laws without popular
support will cause great bitterness and upheaval. But worst of all it causes
resentment and disrespect for officials of the government and so weakens public
confidence in Democracy itself.
Richard K. Munro