If I lived among the Cherokee…

Angie Gambill, editor of The Tomahawk paper in Mountain City, Tennessee, is offended by people taking offense at the prominent display of religious doctrine in her local courthouse.*

“A complaint has been lodged by Washington-based Americans for Separation for Church and State on behalf of a county resident in opposition to the 10 Commandments display at the courthouse,” said [County Mayor] Grayson at last week’s Johnson County Board of Commissioners meeting.

The foundation of the complaint is Thomas Jefferson’s ideal of a wall of separation between church and state.  An ideal that has been upheld repeatedly by the United States Supreme Court.

This carries little weight in Ms. Gambill’s world.  A world where it makes more sense to separate people:

“If I decided to live among the Cherokee, I would expect to see symbols of their culture, religion and history everywhere.”

“I would never question the right of an African American community to display reminders of their heritage and uniqueness as a people.”

Well, Ms. Gambill, you do not have the luxury of excluding African American’s or Cherokee from your society. Because, it is not yours.  It is theirs.  It is theirs and ours, and there is even room in it for you.  All that is required is you follow the laws that have evolved over many societies, many years and many battles.  These laws exist expressly to allow us to live together in one community.

That is what you don’t understand.  While you are doggedly fighting for the primacy of your faith against all others in what you suppose is your little corner of the globe, you ignorantly dismiss the history of this country.  That is why you are being opposed by an organization called Americans UNITED for the Separation of Church and State.

In her crowning rhetorical achievement, Ms. Gambill looks to the children to lead:

In last week’s Tomahawk, little Sam Allen spoke volumes in his honest and obviously heartfelt letter. “We all need to read and know Jesus’ ten commandments because Jesus didn’t make them for nothing.” I can’t pretend to improve on those words of simple childlike faith and wisdom.

Really Angie?  You can’t improve on ignorance?  I feel sorry for little Sam Allen.  To have grow up in a community which cares so little for you that they cannot even correct your mistakes.  Worse, they celebrate them as wise.

“Just think of the tragedy of teaching children not to doubt”, Clarence Darrow.

* Link found through Pharyngula, PZ Myers exceptional blog.

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