Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Brewmeister

Atheists opposed to Holocaust memorial design

Recommended Posts

First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
Jblake, I think the interpretations are pretty much these:

 

In 2001, Roy Moore, then Chief Justice of Alabama, installed a monument to the Ten Commandments in the state judicial building. In 2003, he was ordered in the case of Glassroth v. Moore by a federal judge to remove the monument, but he refused to comply, ultimately leading to his removal from office. The Supreme Court refused to hear the case, allowing the lower court's decision to stand.

On March 2, 2005, the Supreme Court heard arguments for two cases involving religious displays, Van Orden v. Perry and McCreary County v. ACLU of Kentucky. These were the first cases directly dealing with display of the Ten Commandments the Court had heard since Stone v. Graham (1980). These cases were decided on June 27, 2005. In Van Orden, the Court upheld, by a 5-4 vote, the legality of a Ten Commandments display at the Texas state capitol due to the monument's "secular purpose." In McCreary County, however, the Court ruled 5-4 that displays of the Ten Commandments in several Kentucky county courthouses were illegal because they were not clearly integrated with a secular display, and thus were considered to have a religious purpose.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wow. I was amazed at the article. A well meaning group is effectively white washing history. The Holocost WAS started as and continued primarily as an anti-semitic action. It WAS the "final solution" to the European Jewish problem. Nazis then used it to include the unwanted and those who opposed them including millions of Russion POWs.

 

It's insulting to even think of a Holocost memorial that does not include Jewish symbols. I'm proudly Catholic and have no offense to seeing those Jewish symbols used in such a setting.

 

It's not about the government endorsing a specific religion.

 

It's about telling the truth thru art and creating something meaningful that lasts.

The Holocost WAS started as and continued primarily as an anti-semitic action.

 

That is debated amongst historians. If you are Jewish, you may use the word "holocaust" to refer specifically to a Jewish historical event, and you may view the people who were Jewish being put to death as uniquely tied to that event. Therefore, if you hold that viewpoint, and if you were not Jewish, you were not part of the holocaust. You were just killed by Nazis in an organized fashion tertiary to it.

 

Broader definitions include approximately two to three million Soviet POWs, two million ethnic Poles, up to 1,500,000 Romani, 200,000 handicapped, political and religious dissenters, 15,000 homosexuals and 5,000 Jehovah's Witnesses, bringing the death toll to around 11 million. The broadest definition would include six million Soviet civilians, raising the death toll to 17 million.

 

Under that definition, it was not an anti-semitic event unless you were Jewish and viewed it in that frame of reference. The Nazis were very organized in their extermination of many different groups of people. They started by putting the mentally disabled to death. They were still trying to deport Jews at that time while they organized the deaths of others en masse.

 

I think someone who is Jewish saying that Jews were targeted is accurate. Gays were targeted. Communists were targeted. Jehovah's Witnesses were targeted. Someone saying it was a Jewish event to a member of one of these other groups may find themselves passionately challenged to stop ignoring the suffering of these other groups and their lost millions as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I think I have the solution. Whaddayathink?
I mean, it's as if there are NO Jewish atheists or something.....

Edit: needed a verb in there somewhere

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
Just because a government is tolerant of all religions does not mean it is establishing any religion. As a matter of fact, by being intolerant of all religions, it is in fact establishing atheism (belief there is no god) as the state "religion".

 

Everyone is screaming about everyone needing to be tolerant and then they go and pull these kinds of stunts, proving tolerance is not a characteristic of the US government, or it's people. Equality for all does not mean any one group gets a step up on anyone else. In today's US society, the only thing that counts anymore is whose ox is getting gored, and everything is good if it's not mine. Otherwise, it's time to whine, protest and do all kinds of temper tantrums until I get my way.

 

I'm almost sure that our Founding Fathers didn't mean anything of the sort, and wrote in the Bill of Rights to avoid it. Watering down the Bill of Rights through obscure reinterpretations have basically removed the rights we were meant to have.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
But the government isn't being tolerant of all religions in this case. Jews are represented, but not Jehovah's Witnesses, for example. On the face of it, this memorial seems to only be memorializing Jews. The other two proposed memorials didn't have this problem.

 

Equality for all does not mean any one group gets a step up on anyone else

 

That principle would include not creating public memorials that only include some of the people being memorialized.

 

Here's a recent judge's injunction against a WWII memorial that only represented Christian soldiers (and one Jew, but I guess they didn't get the news that a star of david isn't really a religious symbol):

http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2013/07/22/judge-blocks-christian-war-memorial/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
Just because a government is tolerant of all religions does not mean it is establishing any religion.

From context, I'm having to assume that you are responding to ThomasJefferson.

 

The government displaying the Ten Commandments is not being tolerant of all religions. It's even very sectarian, because there are three versions of the Ten Commandments: Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish -- there are 11 to 12 different points that are combined differently by the different religions. Since it's Protestants who keep pushing this, three guesses which version they want to have displayed. And by choosing which version to display, then the government would indeed be choosing one religion over the others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wow. I was amazed at the article. A well meaning group is effectively white washing history. The Holocost WAS started as and continued primarily as an anti-semitic action. It WAS the "final solution" to the European Jewish problem. Nazis then used it to include the unwanted and those who opposed them including millions of Russion POWs.

 

It's insulting to even think of a Holocost memorial that does not include Jewish symbols. I'm proudly Catholic and have no offense to seeing those Jewish symbols used in such a setting.

 

It's not about the government endorsing a specific religion.

 

It's about telling the truth thru art and creating something meaningful that lasts.

ThomasJefferson ... Many others died too but you miss the driving cause. The key is that the driving cause / political motivation was antisemitism. It was systematic and used to motivate a political movement. Six million Jews died. Millions others died too. And I apologize for saying this, but they were pulled into the Holocaust thru the war and the Aryan purification. The holocaust was started by antisemitism used as a political tool.

 

http://www.britannica.com/holocaust/article-215485

 

Plus your numbers are also debatable and use the high end for other groups. Your Romani number is high. Many other sites puts the number closer to 250,000. I found it interesting that some sites categorizes the "ethnic poles" as "Polish Catholics". But that could be essentially because Poland was/is a Catholic nation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
Being tolerant does not mean that an observer isn't affected by what they see or hear. If someone wants to put up a memorial to something important, and it "offends" me, being tolerant means let it go and just move on, the memorial isn't something meant as important to me. I see memorials to the war dead all around. Does that mean I support war? If it annoys me enough, I just don't go there anymore. I can always find places that are more comfortable to me.

 

There's always a certain amount of MYOB when it comes to tolerance. If some group wishes to put up something I find offensive next door, and it's on private property, I don't have to contribute to it and I guess I would rather invest in curtains so I don't have to look at it. If someone puts up a huge flashing sign that disrupts MY privacy, well-being, then we have courts that will assumedly rule justly. I don't have a problem with the message, it's just a big annoying light that's the problem.

 

We have become a society of zero-tolerance. If I'm annoyed, I sue. That is a serious breakdown in a civil society.

 

While some battles might be worth fighting, one has to be careful which ditch they wish to die in. One isn't going to win any wars, just a few skirmishes here and there that basically make more enemies than friends over the long run. Heck, we all got crabby neighbors. I pretty much ignore them. Eventually they ignore me too. :)

 

However, it has become a weapon of the zero-tolerance people to use the government to enforce their wishes. If it's a religious issue and the government gets in the middle of it, the "separation of Church and State" is pretty hard to justify when the government is hip deep in the issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
If someone wants to put up a memorial to something important, and it "offends" me, being tolerant means let it go and just move on, the memorial isn't something meant as important to me.

 

There wouldn't be any complaints if this memorial was paid for with private money and put on private property.

 

There's always a certain amount of MYOB when it comes to tolerance.

 

It becomes my business when it involves my tax money and my government.

 

If some group wishes to put up something I find offensive next door, and it's on private property, I don't have to contribute to it and I guess I would rather invest in curtains so I don't have to look at it.

 

Well this particular monument isn't that.

 

We have become a society of zero-tolerance. If I'm annoyed, I sue. That is a serious breakdown in a civil society.

 

This isn't about a supposed lawsuit over being "offended" by something on private property. The breakdown is in your not understanding the situation.

 

In the other thread, you implied you would not be able to create tax-exempt status for a group named NAAWP, even though you can. Do you always argue over how you imagine the world to be instead of how it actually is?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I think I have the solution. Whaddayathink?
Many Jewish friends that considered themselves atheist/agnostic. Many wore a Star of David necklace (particularly when going out). Never saw one where the A/Atomic symbol on a necklace. In fact, the Chai (meaning life) necklaces were more popular amongst the more affiliated Jews, the Star of David was more popular amongst the non-affiliated Jews.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
First of all, the article makes no mention of atheists. However, the use of the Star of David was objected to by the Freedom from Religion Foundation. That is a foundation that works primarily with the isssue of separation of church and state (1st Amendment violations).
I mean, the government spends money and gives land to lots of things I don't care for or agree with, and some things that I care about and agree with. Historically, that was seen as legislative prerogative, if you don't like how to government squanders funds, vote the rascals out. Making everything litigable is rather sad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You know, I'm just not a big fan of memorials at all. Memorials are about feelings, so when feelings get hurt, it's no surprise everyone gets overly passionate and upset. I bet that around 50% of memorials are erected in anger as a way of tells us all to go fly a kite rather than out of respect and a sense of education of the public.

 

In this case, my question is why do we need a holocaust memorial erected in 2013? Do we need a new civil war memorial too? What about a new War of 1812 memorial? Seems like a stale topic to be erecting statues for it.

 

How much did it cost? And the land - what did that cost? Could this money have been used for something else useful to the community other than a 3D expression of outrange and sadness?

 

At the same time, it probably didn't cost so much that it is worth protesting. I am not a fan of we atheists trying to expunge God from all public references. Walking through a cemetary the other day, I noticed the military headstones have symbols of each religion. The symbol I use as my avatar here is the symbol on the atheist headstones. I do not care to see all religious symbols removed from that public space.

 

I'm more worried about the NSA thing, the US giving billions to dictators and bad governments overseas, us deploying the military too much, corporate control of our politicians, our cops becoming militarized, and BSA making a really uncomfortable and badly tailored uniform. So, I'd probably just shrug and walk by it.

 

It wouldn't be the only one-sided view of the world my kids get. They are taught in school that we won WWII, but we all know the Russians had Hitler on the run before Pearl Harbor.

 

 

 

 

 

As a Jew, I really do not like Jewish efforts to fight public displays of religion, I think that they fostered anti-semitism and were obnoxious. I also think that Holocaust memorials are bad for American Jews, but that's another topic... institutional American Judaism clearly disagrees with me. But short of a significant sum of money that would be "establishment" I find it best to ignore these things.

 

OTOH, I take advantage of public parks more than most, we all have government programs that we benefit from more than others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The article makes a clear constitutional case against the memorials design.The six pointed star can have other meanings, but if one surveyed people, I would predict the overwhelming majority would associate the six point star with the jewish faith. But perhaps that is not the problem.

Perhaps the memorial is of too narrow a focus and needs to broaden its scope. Perhaps it should include ALL genocidal and holocaust episodes: Armenia and the Turks. Serbia and Bosnia. The Khemer Rouge in Cambodia. Argentina. Darfur. Rwanda. Nanking and Suchow in WW2. The evil that created Auschwitz and Dachau was not and never has been limited to Nazi Germany and the Jewish people.

Propose a memorial like that, and you will have my support..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The article makes a clear constitutional case against the memorials design.The six pointed star can have other meanings, but if one surveyed people, I would predict the overwhelming majority would associate the six point star with the jewish faith. But perhaps that is not the problem.

Perhaps the memorial is of too narrow a focus and needs to broaden its scope. Perhaps it should include ALL genocidal and holocaust episodes: Armenia and the Turks. Serbia and Bosnia. The Khemer Rouge in Cambodia. Argentina. Darfur. Rwanda. Nanking and Suchow in WW2. The evil that created Auschwitz and Dachau was not and never has been limited to Nazi Germany and the Jewish people.

Propose a memorial like that, and you will have my support..

Don't forget the American Indian in that list.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×