|Sermon on the Mount (Painting by Carl Bloch)|
High above the hills of Montana stands a familiar figure: Jesus.
Now this isn’t the very same Jesus who gave a Sermon on the Mount, this is just a statue. Nevertheless, a controversy is brewing about whether or not it should remain standing on federal land.
Amy Beth Hanson of Associated Press reports that although this statue has been there for 60 years, “a group of atheists and agnostics” have recently asked that it be removed on the grounds that “it violates the constitutional separation of church and state.”
U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen instead ruled that “the statue’s secular and irreverent uses outweighed its religious uses.” What she’s saying is that because “Big Mountain Jesus has been the subject of much frivolity over the years,” the statue gets to stay.
Can’t win for losing here. Since the statue was originally meant to be a reverent reminder of World War II soldiers who gave their all, such frivolity seems highly dishonorable (from both secular and religious standpoints).
All the more reason to move it to where it can be spiritually appreciated, and adopt another type of memorial in its place. This will not only honor First Amendment intentions, but will also enhance overall decorum.
Copyright September 2, 2015 by Linda Van Slyke All Rights Reserved