Comments about ‘After more than a half century, Santa Monica Nativity display at Palisades Park is no more’

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Published: Friday, Nov. 30 2012 6:35 a.m. MST

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SLC gal
Salt Lake City, UT

So I really don't get these atheists.. if they don't believe in God, why do the references to God get their hackles up so strongly?

Fred Vader
Oklahoma City, OK

"There's no war on Christmas, but there is a war involving the entanglement of church and state at Christmastime, . . . and said they don't believe religious or anti-religious displays should be allowed on public property.”

Um, when you are ok banning certain types of speech, whether "religious or anti-religious" in a public forum, you either a) clearly don't understand the first amendment freedom of speech clause, or b) are a hate group out to shut down all speech you don't agree with, or c) are waging a war on Christmas and religion and don't care that you are also taking away your own freedoms in the process, or d) all of the above.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

Atheists win again in defending the First Amendment.

Ralph West Jordan
Taylorsville, UT

Re: The Scientist

"Atheists win again in defending the First Amendment."

More like the Atheist succeed in denying some peoples right to First Amendment protection, over their right to First Amendment protection!

The lack of the Nativity scene being present in its traditional setting, speaks as loudly as its presence!

Me wonders whose rights are more important? Guess the whiners win again!

NedGrimley
Brigham City, UT

It's all about winning...

Steve C. Warren
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

What will good Christians do now that they can't promote their beliefs in a Santa Monica public park?

For one thing, they can display their beliefs on church-owned property. In my metro area, one such place is called Temple Square (and its environs).

Or, there are tens of thousands of homes with front yards where religious displays can be placed. One such area is referred to as "Christmas Street." And, if I'm not mistaken, aren't there additional tens of thousands of vehicles on which people can attach bumper stickers with faith messages and where they can dangle crosses, etc., from their rear-view mirrors?

Oh, and how about all those big privately owned downtown buildings: What's to prevent their owners from placing the Ten Commandments on the walls or religious icons in the windows?

Alas, that's not enough. What Christians want is public property to promote their message--and they don't want any contrary points of view spoiling the ambience.

Californian#1@94131
San Francisco, CA

>> "So I really don't get these atheists.. if they don't believe in God, why do the references to God get their hackles up so strongly?"

A Scientist
Provo, UT

Ralph West Jordan,

Bitter much?

the truth
Holladay, UT

Another Case of the LEFT, liberals, taking freedom away.

Another Case of LEFT, liberals, censuring ans banning speech, expression ans ideas from the public square.

And A Scientist thinks they are defending the constitution, perhaps he should actually read it, and not use modern twisted leftest interpretaitons.

Historically religion and religious was heavily in the public square and NO founding father had a problem with it.

I am not sure how congress is respecting an Establishment of Religion in santa monica.

Christianity is not a religion but a religious philosophy.

Catholic church is an establishment of religion.
Baptist church is an establishment of religion.
Jewish Synague or temple is an establishment of religion.
LDS church is an establishment of religion.
Islamic mosque establishment of religion.

A nativity scene is not establishment of religion.

More importantly the Freedom to express, even religious thoughts and ideas, in the public square is a right of the people by the 1st, 9th, and 10th amendments.

The first amendment does not limit certain speech in the public square.

but stops the congress from abridging.

The government is of and by the people, it is the people, the government is not limited.

Rynn
Las Vegas, NV

I'm not a particularly religious person but I do not have a problem with nativity scenes at Christmas. There is one right in my town that is lit up at night and I think it looks very nice.
I do not understand people who feel they cannot be content in their beliefs (or lack of beliefs) unless everything around them reflects those beliefs. People who feel so threatened by anything that reflects a different belief.

JPJP
Santa Monica, CA

What’s so hard to understand?

There is no Constitutional protection to do what you want on government land. No one is taking away freedoms. You STILL have the right to put up your religious display, you just have to do it on PRIVATE land. It’s not about IF you can, its WHERE you can.

The public forum cannot be used by ONE religious group on an EXCLUSIVE basis ... either you have to provide access to ALL religious points of view or NONE. That's equal protection under the law. Anything other than that constitutes government endorsement of a particular religious viewpoint.

Stop insisting your own particular point of view be allowed at the expense of others ... open it up EQUALLY to EVERYONE or, better, CLOSE IT to everyone ... everyone must live by the SAME rules. Put it up on church property or your own property... no one is suggesting you can't do THAT (which would be a violation of the 1st amendment). But NOT on property owned by EVERYONE in the country, unless you are providing EQUAL ACCESS for EVERYONE.

That's democracy, and that's freedom.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

the truth,

How many words can you use to say nothing?

Your comment demonstrates positively that the Constitution is a completely alien document to you.

JPJP
Santa Monica, CA

Mr. Scientist:

What you don't seem to recognize is that you can't just reference the Constitution. Our laws are not simply the Constitution as written. There are 250 years of case law since the Constitution that establish all the points in my post (above), not once, but over and over again.

This case law makes it crystal clear that the Constitution is interpreted to mean EXACTLY that ... that the government can not single out and provide support for any one religion. (In many cases, such as public schools, they can not provide support for religion at ALL, even if they provide equal access to ALL religions).

A Christmas display in the absence of displays representing other religious or religious points of view is in violation for that very reason. And that's why time and time again courts have found such displays in violation. Its all over the news all over the country; you can read about it if you care to.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

Jpjp,

What you don't seem to recognize is that a century or more of judicial precedent supports my interpretation, not yours.

The law is on our side, not yours.

Good luck with arguing otherwise.

JPJP
Santa Monica, CA

You have only to read the news in the last few years to see that you could not be more wrong. case after case is decided against religion (you do know about Fox's Bill O'Reilly's War on Christmas rants on television every time the religious right loses another case?) I am not going to spend the time creating a synopsis of all the case law, but there is a lot of press and case law information about such suits at the ffrf website.

you must have been arguing for slavery as well ... you can find some historical legal precedent for that too, I suppose. but it IS the 21st century now, or didn't someone tell you??

The Scientist
Provo, UT

JPJP wrote:

" case after case is decided against religion"

Yes, isn't it wonderful that the religious hegemony is being broken!

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