The news these days seems to have two major foci.
The first is all about the following: "Anti-Trump", "Pro-Trump", "Anti-Progressivism", "Pro-Progressivism", "Anti-Conservatism", or "Pro-Conservatism" - and sometimes all mixed together.
The second is about the wave, across the world, of applied Political Correctness (PC). This article addresses this second major focus of the news.
PC takes many forms. Examples are: young adults needing "safe spaces", some minority of people - sometimes just one - complaining about a display of religious leaning, feeling threatened by a sign for Donald Trump or a Confederate Battle Flag or feeling threatened by almost anything else. And, NO, I am not referring to minority in the form of race, ethnicity, religion, etc. I am using the word MINORITY in the classic sense; that is a person or set of persons smaller in number than the majority.
What we often see today is what is called "The Tyranny of Minorities". Hans Staub has an excellent book on this very subject. Worth a quick look, it is.
Below I'll offer links to news reports of such tyranny of minorities.
But first, if we consider that about 70 years ago the young people of the age of today's aptly named "snowflakes" were storming the beaches of Normandy, it should give us pause. Into what kind of adults will these "snowflakes" grow? Truly frightening.
There is an organization, The Freedom From Religion Foundation, which seems to be at the forefront of the attacks on religions.
When visiting their web site one is greeted with the following:
This "foundation" is so disgusting and wrong on so many different levels it's hard to describe them all. So, here are just a couple:
1) The word "nontheism", of course, is the opposite of theism. Or, espousing the belief that there is no God. Is there any proof or evidence of this? No. To be fair here, there is no proof or evidence that there is a God either. This is a main reason I remain an Agnostic - until facts are offered to the contrary.
So to promote some idea that has no basis in fact is clearly within this foundation's right, of course. But, why attempt to insult and/or alienate the vast majority in this country who are theists?
Now, as an agnostic I have not a single ax to grind over anyone's religion - or, non-religion. Except, of course, when one faction does its utmost to disparage, denigrate, or otherwise attempt to curtail another's views or expressions of belief; OR, when someone follows a belief system seeking to do other than further mankind living in peace.
Such a movement, as this foundation represents, seeks only to further divide people - as if these days we need help in doing so. The politically progressive (not liberals, per. se.) seem to have as their strategy to divide and rule. And, from all that I can discern this foundation is decidedly progressive politically.
As a slight aside here, above I offered "(not liberals, per. se.)". The reason for the separation is that, while the objectives of those who are liberal may sound similar to those who are progressive, the methods employed by both are dimensional universes apart. A liberal will discuss and present their points logically in hopes of winning you over. A progressive will instill their views on the majority through the force of law and/or ridicule - whether the majority want what "they are selling" or not. (For a little more on this, see Alinsky's "Rules for Radicals".) As examples, JFK was a liberal and Obama is a progressive. A detailed exposition of these differences is beyond the scope of this article.
2) The second part of this foundation's opening gambit, i.e., defend the constitutional separation between religion and government, clearly seeks to have those who do not do research believe that the US Constitution actually says or implies this. It does not. The Constitution requires the government to be neutral, not favoring religion nor favoring the absence of religion. Further, the Constitution offers freedom of religion, not freedom from religion.
The so-called separation of Church and State comes NOT from the Constitution. Rather, it comes from one line that Thomas Jefferson offered in his letter to the "Danbury Baptists" back in 1802. Jefferson was explaining the Establishment Clause of the 1st Amendment to our Constitution. Here is the 1st Amendment with the Establishment Clause underlined:
Originally the Bill of Rights (i.e., the first 10 amendments to the Constitution) only applied to the federal government - that is, not to the States. So, originally a State could have set up its own, official religion. None did, however. The 14th Amendment extended the applicability of the Constitution to the States.
Over time the Supreme Court has had cases and rulings (called "opinions") on the 1st Amendment. This link offers the current view on the Establishment Clause.
If you'll notice, the first paragraph in this link says, "It also prohibits the government from unduly preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion."
Clearly, this interpretation prohibits the government, State or Federal, from unduly taking action(s) resulting in "preference" - one way or another.
Local communities allowing citizens the right to display Christmas decorations hardly goes against the "common man" connotation of unduly "preferring religion over non-religion". But, any ruling forbidding such displays seems to meet the unduly preferring non-religion over religion.
Quickly, let's look at the "Free Exercise Clause" of the same 1st Amendment:
Therefore the Freedom From Religion Foundation has no legal standing in threatening people who wish to display a Christmas Tree, Menorah, or what have you. HOWEVER, as most people and/or local communities can ill afford the costs associated with a lawsuit - even should they win - they acquiesce and remove the "offending" display, words, plaques, or whatever raised the ire of this despicable foundation. To my humble view this is nothing but legalized terrorism.
This style of legalized terrorism extends well beyond arguments for/against religious expression.
In years gone by blacks correctly decried that separate bathrooms, one set for whites and one set for "colored", was wrong. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 put an end to all forms of segregation. However, of late we see news stories of people demanding separate bathrooms due to a real, imagined, or publicity-seeking gender preference. And, lawsuits or threats of lawsuits are giving this very small minority a victory over the majority at a significant cost to defendants of such lawsuits. (See the reference to the book "The Tyranny of Minorities" above.) Unscrupulous and publicity seeking lawyers and organizations are ever too eager to bully those who can not afford to defend themselves. A Disgrace.
OK! On to the news reports I mentioned.
This from CNN on Trigger Warnings & Safe Spaces.
This from Case Western.
Coloring Books & Play-Doh?????
And, even puppies!!
This on the fear of chalk writing on a sidewalk.
I especially liked this article.
And, it's more than just "snowflakes" succumbing to PC:
NYC "Jumps The Shark" because Trump won.
In Italy a priest bans a nativity scene due to the potential for offending Muslims.
Faculty member fired for offering an opinion.
Another faculty member faces loss of tenure due to offering an opinion.
Professor at LSU fired for using controversial language to her adult class.
From the Huffington Post on the top 10 worst colleges for free speech.
To me, this whole subject is very troubling. And, to those who condone, support, and perpetuate the divisiveness of PC, I say THIS.
Oh, don't just take my word for it.
This is called Fascism.