Mjolnir On Military Headstones


Huh. On the way home from work I learned that a) there are only certain symbols that are approved to be etched on the tombstones of soldiers killed in the line of duty (which applies, I would assume, only if the solider wants to be be buried with a government headstone), b) that Mjolnir is one of these approved “emblems of belief” and c) that there are symbols for atheists and humanists on the list.

Here’s the link from PRI’s The World if you want to listen to the story:

While I was doing some digging for this post, I learned that Americans United for Separation of Church and State played a part in gaining equal religious representation on government headstones, and participated in the fight to allow a Wiccan pentacle to be placed on the gravestone of Sgt. Patrick D. Stewart, a soldier who was killed in Afghanistan in 2005.

Comments

  1. resident_alien says

    How about a bow and arrow ? Because I for one favour Hawkeye.*sigh* Jeremy Renner,hm…

  2. ianeymeaney says

    If you engrave Mjolnir on a tombstone, will only those who are worthy be able to lift it?

  3. stever says

    Somewhere I saw a complete graphic list of the approved symbols. There were dozens, including the American Humanist Association logo, the atheist atom and the Zapf italic “A.” I can’t remember whether there was an option to have no symbol at all.

  4. Corvus illustris says

    I can’t get the fershluggene link to work properly, but the VA maintains a complete list–with graphics except for the “Muslim star” which cannot be shown due to copyright restrictions (?)–at this URL:

    http://www.cem.va.gov/cem/docs/emblems.pdf

    There is no bow and arrow @1, but there are several symbols for Native American affiliations as well as several symbols that would fit friends of FtB.

  5. bahrfeldt says

    Pagan gods? Graven images? What’s next, naming four days of the Lord’s week after Norse gods?

    • Corvus illustris says

      Thor’s day and Mjolnir are fine. I’m waiting for Freyr’s day and his attribute, a huge erect penis (ingens priapus, according to a horrified Christian cleric who visited Uppsala in the good old days). Make love, not war.

    • says

      Or maybe based on those pagan names out of Astrology…

      Day/Month names are a perfect way to refute Christian’s who think that the year 1 starting with Jesus is a compelling piece of evidence that Christianity is true.

      Also, we’ve got 50 pentacles on the USA flag thanks to the High Lord Of Darkness, so the Wicca symbol may be the most patriotic of them all. Damn you Christian traitors!

  6. left0ver1under says

    I worry about this. White supremacists are big on Nordic symbols, and there are known to be large numbers of white supremacists within the US military, especially after the US military lowered its standards and accepted criminals and high school dropouts. Are there any instances of mjolnir being used as permanent displays of racism on grave markers?

    http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2006/fall/skin-symbols?page=0,3

    http://archive.adl.org/hate_symbols/ThorsHammer.asp

    • Corvus illustris says

      Look, the KKK was big on crosses. Conversely, the swastika had an honorable history, and the Finnish air-force still uses it (in blue). I even had a great-uncle Adolph. Mjolnir, like the cross or six-pointed star (or interlaced triangles if you prefer), could connote anything. White supremacists are also big on their remarkable Christianity-purged-of-everything-Jewish, so crosses may be good enough for them–and excluding crosses might cause a fuss.

  7. says

    I think anyone should be free to have whatever symbol they want on their headstone (as long as its not insulting to anyone else obviously!)

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