Signs in Washington

14 12 2008

So, I’m sure you all know about the atheist sign in the capitol building in Washington State. The whole thing has been one big mess. There was an illegal nativity scene, so the FFRF put up an illegal atheist sign, and so others jumped on the bandwagon and wanted their displays put up. It’s reached the point where there is nowhere to put new displays. It’s a case study in why this stuff shouldn’t be allowed.

Constitutional reality check: it isn’t about equal time. Equal time for everyone is impossible to achieve (as evidenced by this situation), so anything religious is supposed to be kept out. Any religious establishment by the government is illegal, and an honest attempt to provide equal time is irrelevant. All that shows is that they mean well, and meaning well is not enough.

I also think that the FFRF’s sign was unnecessarily provocative. It was entirely sufficient to make their point without the “hardens hearts and enslaves minds” part, and in fact would be much nicer. That was designed just to outrage the religious, and that does us no favors. It serves to reinforce stereotypes about atheists, nothing more.

Really, we should have been demanding that they remove the displays entirely, except maybe for some sort of completely neutral holiday display. Instead, certain parts of the atheist community have revealed themselves to be complete hypocrites. It doesn’t surprise me, or probably most others, but it’s frustrating. We want a secular government, not a government giving equal time to every religion.