Mojave Cross Case Shows Nonbelievers Are Still Second Class Citizens

April 25, 2012

In case you were wondering, nonreligious Americans are still second class citizens. It's time to put aside that Reason Rally euphoria and face the harsh, sad truth: men and women who live without religion are still systematically discriminated against at the highest level. With the Supreme Court's blessing, a transparent ruse has been OK'd to "establish" that a large Christian cross on public land in the Mojave desert is now on "private" property, finally negating earlier court orders that the cross must come down. In other words, there is warm official approval for imposing Christian symbolism on every American. In one sense, of course, the nonreligious aren't being singled out for this abuse: Jews, Muslims, and Americans of every other religious or nonreligious tradition that isn't Christianity will stand -- and be belittled -- in the shadow of this overt Christian symbol on what is still (except in the most official way) public land. Attention, non-Christians, you're all being put in your place by America's Christians. Their message rings loud and clear: "This is our country. It's not yours."

At least we know where we stand.

And given the rapid growth of the nonreligious category -- it's now far and away the largest lifestance category except for Christians -- one can't help wondering how long America's Christian conservatives think they can get away with this. Or what form payback will take when the pendulum reverses, as (given our numbers) it must before too very long.