What with the decision not to appeal, and now some articles reporting on the scholarship Jessica will be getting (the brainchild of The Friendly Atheist, and proudly supported by Freethought Blogs), a whole new crop of people are hearing about the Cranston Banner for, apparently, the first time. Or if they have known about it, they haven’t learned much, because they are using the same ignorant arguments they have from the beginning.
And they are continuing to threaten. I read a fresh comment today specifying that someone should knock some of Jessica’s teeth out. So, yeah, this has been a fixture of Cranston commentary since at least October. But in the minds of some, who are more concerned with her soul than her safety, there are sadder things about the Banner case… like Jessica’s atheism.
Why couldn’t she just look the other way? After all, only six words out of the whole banner are objectionable! Besides, since atheists don’t believe in God, they shouldn’t be offended by any mention of Him! And it’s not fair to shove atheism down our throats! Hey, when she wins, all that money will say “In God We Trust” on it!
Though some Cranston Christians supported her, for the most part it was “Praise the Lord and start the persecution“. Christians were, it seems, a highly oppressed majority. It was clearly Jessica’s fault that the school had been violating the constitution, and with God on their side, they would surely win the appeal!
The Christian mob wanted their own religion to have a special, favored status, and to be able to punish Jessica for her atheism. On the other side of the world, we saw what that looks like. And we saw that it can happen to Christians when they are in the minority. The only way to be certain that you will not be mistreated when you are in the minority, is to keep those laws safe when you are in the majority. It’s a matter of mutual respect, and of maintaining that wall.
It’s a lesson Cranston is learning the hard way. And one which, as evidenced by their comments, some people are not learning at all.
(and I have learned that I had no idea how much I had written on this one thing!)