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Cross has deep meaning for veteran

Posted: June 25, 2014 - 7:28am

I would like to thank the Kenai City Council for keeping the Veteran’s Memorial the way it was designed. As for the cross controversy, I am a Vietnam veteran and also a Christian. When I see a cross, whether on a memorial or a tombstone, it simply means to me that someone has died, and it has no religious connotation. To those who are offended by the cross, I perceive that you attach some spiritual connection implying that it is a symbol of the cross of Jesus. If it offends you, then you have neglected to understand and accept the significance of that cross, which is that Jesus died on it to forgive you of your sins. Do you really think that by erasing all symbols of the cross that you will erase the great gift that Jesus gave to all of mankind? Or do you think that by eliminating the cross you will escape the judgement waiting for those who despise the cross and are offended by it?

If you see the religious implications in all images of the cross, I’m sorry for you, because you must be constantly offended by power poles with cross-bars.

You are entitled to your opinion, but it is just that — an opinion. Others do not see things the way you do. Please do not try to take away a memorial that means a tremendous amount to those of us who have lost comrades fighting for the freedoms that you take for granted. If you are offended by our expression of thanks for those who gave their all for their country, then don’t look at it. It obviously has no significance to you anyway.

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jford 06/25/14 - 09:20 am
Ah, yes, another professed Christian who will judge others,

based on nothing but his own unfounded suppositions and misconceptions.

The first unfounded assumption is that anyone not supporting a cross in a public space is 'offended' by the symbolism. Notice his use of the word 'if'. If you are only that which he assumes.

Many people have reservations about a cross in a public space because of religious freedoms, no one religion is supposed to be held in higher esteem than another.

Many people have reservations because of their belief, like the nation's founders, that there should be a wall of separation between church and state.

No, the writer doesn't wish to acknowledge that there may be reasons beyond his assumptions. He will condemn others for simply being in the cross hairs of his own over-worked imagination.

Some people may have reservations because their religion isn't the letter writers religion, the writer assumes those people's religion is just an 'opinion', and others aren't entitled to an opinion that isn't the same as his. Not entitled to a religion that isn't the same as his.

Others can respect the sacrifices of our service men and women, the sacrifices of the families and can respect the religious beliefs of those individuals and families without having to align themselves with the religious beliefs of the letter writer.

The letter writer chooses to condemn and disparage all others, he assumes he can speak for others and can describe the actions of all others based solely on his assumptions.

Wasn't his God supposed to have provided counsel in regards judging and condemning others?

In America, the freedom to hold and practice your own brand of religious belief is a right not to be abridged. Condemning those whose beliefs aren't the same as yours isn't an expression of an American ideal.

KMarx 06/26/14 - 08:05 pm
I must have a faulty copy of the Bill of Rights

"Article I - Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

I just couldn't find that part where the founders stated "that there should be a wall of separation between church and state."

jford 06/26/14 - 11:43 pm
Bill of Rights isn't faulty, it's your presumption that's faulty

You have some learning to look forward to.

Jefferson said: "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."[1]

Jefferson's metaphor of a wall of separation has been cited repeatedly by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In Reynolds v. United States (1879) the Court wrote that Jefferson's comments "may be accepted almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect of the [First] Amendment."

In Everson v. Board of Education (1947), Justice Hugo Black wrote: "In the words of Thomas Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect a wall of separation between church and state."[2]

You really should expand your reading, it will help to expand that narrow view you hold. As with most of the Constitution, it helps if you understand the context and the intent before you attempt to define for yourself what the Constitution guarantees.

The wall of separation between church and state is and was a key tenet in the founding of our country and it's just as relevant and important today as it was then.

KMarx 06/27/14 - 11:06 pm
My presumption is just fine

Without launching into a voluminous retort, I suggest you simply look at your citation of the statement by Thomas Jefferson. He defines what he means by a "wall."

"...their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State."

There is nothing in this quotation that supports that the founding fathers, or in this citation Thomas Jefferson, would conclude that a cross depicting a grave marker of a fallen soldier represents either making a law respecting the establishment of a religion, or that it prohibits the free exercising thereof.

jford 06/28/14 - 12:47 am
No, your presumption was entirely faulty,

just as I demonstrated.

Lower courts have established it is illegal to display a religious symbol, such as a Christian cross, on public land, as it demonstrates preference to a specific religion and thus violates the separation of church and state as interpreted in the First Amendment.

The Supreme Court has refused to hear appeals leaving the lower court decisions binding.

As I said before, you don't get to define what the Constitution does or does not guarantee. The courts do that and the public record is clear.

Your supposition is worthless. It's not backed by any reality.

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