Still Pissed Off About the Hawley-Smoot Tariff

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Repost: ACLU v. The L.A. County Seal

I just found something I wrote in Ace of Spades' comments last summer, before I started blogging. I figured I'd re-post it, since it never showed up here and it saves me the trouble of thinking up something new to say.

Your comments on the separation of church and state reminded me of what's going on in L.A. now. I don't know how many of you are following this, but the ACLU recently filed a lawsuit to get Los Angeles county to change its seal, which was adopted in the early 1950s. On one side of the seal is a very small cross.

Now you might think this is a nit-picky kind of complaint, especially considering that most people never look at a county seal (seriously, do you know what yours looks like?), let alone scrutinize it, let alone declare it an unconstitutional encroachment on the separation of church and state. But I'm writing to say I'm with the ACLU on this one. Frankly, I fear an America where the government can ram religion down our throats in the name of "heritage" or "culture." Indeed, if I have any issue with the ACLU, it is that they aren't going far enough. Here are some items I'd like to see added to that lawsuit.

1. There should be no mention, in any government document, of the words Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday. Tuesday and Friday are named after pagan Teutonic German religious figure, Wednesday from "Woden's day (i.e. Odin)" and Thursday is named for the Norse god Thor. The other three are named for celestial bodies and the Greco-Roman deities associated with them: the Sun, the Moon, and Saturn. I don't want the government using my tax dollars to propogate religious notions about which deities/celestial bodies we worship. For basically the same reason, government should not be allowed to acknowledge the months of July or August, which were inserted by Julius Caesar and Augustus Caesar in connection with their deification in Roman mythology. And we should probably not mention the planets at all.

2. Government should ban the use of certain religiously loaded terms in schools. These terms include "erotic" (after Eros), "panpipes" (after the demi-god Pan), "Venice" or "venereal disease" (from Venus, Roman goddess of love), "Athens" (from Athena, patron of the city of that name), any word ending in "-ology" (from the Greek word "logos," which is theologically loaded in Christianity), "praise" (the name Muhammad means "praised one," or "he who is praised"), or any reference to oil or grease (the name Christ means "annointed," as with oil). We don't need government telling our kids what to think about these clearly religious topics.

3. All government employees who go bald on top of their head should be required to wear a government-issued toupee. The bald spot is far too reminiscent of the Catholic tonsure, and the bald area may be suspiciously close to the area covered by a yarmulka. We don't need government slyly endorsing Catholicism or Judaism that way.

I'm working on a petition for like-minded citizens to sign. I hope you'll help me out with my campaign. And if you have more ideas about government oppression, let me know.