Does anyone find it ironic that the very people who protest so loudly over supposed affronts to Islamic religious expression are often so hostile to the slightest Christian religious expressions -- even incidental expressions?
The left is going bonkers over opposition to the ground zero mosque in the name of religious freedom, but the left's assault on Christian liberties proceeds unabated. One very recent example is the ruling by a three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that memorial crosses erected and displayed along Utah public roads to honor fallen state highway troopers must be removed as unconstitutional.
In case you are wondering how highway crosses could remotely be considered to have violated any constitutional provision, the court tells us: "We hold that these memorials have the impermissible effect of conveying to the reasonable observer the message that the state prefers or otherwise endorses a certain religion."
So here we go again. Our politically correct-intoxicated culture is so allergic to expressions and symbols of Christianity that our courts leap to absurd conclusions to cordon off the chief allergen: Christianity.
To fully appreciate the outrageousness of the court's decision, you must understand that the memorial crosses were placed along Utah public roads by a private -- not public -- organization, the Utah Highway Patrol Association, which also maintains the crosses.
The egregious constitutional infraction here is not that the government put up the signs, which it didn't, but that the memorials were placed along public roads. Thus, "reasonable" passing motorists -- as opposed, I guess, to those afflicted with anti-Christian road rage -- might well assume that the government is endorsing the Christian religion. Horror of horrors. My gosh, what would the largely Christian Founders think?
Since the court is invoking the reasonable-man standard, let me just challenge its fundamental assertion right off the bat. I don't think it's a reasonable inference at all that the government is making a religious statement by permitting the placement of these memorials along the public highway. On the other hand, I think the government would be (and is) making a statement against Christianity by denying this group access because of its paranoia about going into Christian-spawned anaphylactic shock.