I'm getting mighty tired of the Religious Right...

Of course, you can. I talk to people every day who believe that they have had special experiences that convince them that their worldview is correct, the difference being that they believe that President Bush wants them to organize a parade or that Chinese space ships are monitoring their thoughts. Their delusions are as real to them as your god is to you.

I believe that you believe, but I don’t share your beliefs, any more than I share the beliefs of the schizophrenics I talk to. Your subjective experience might be enough to convince you of its validity, but you can’t reasonably expect it to convince anyone else.

Garfield226, got a link to that cite?

Here’s a loosely-related example:

Cristians who are members of the Seventh Day Adventist church believe that Saturday is the day of worship and have a fairly conservative opinion of allowable activities on that day.
Any SDA Christian can tell you of a personal experience or that of a close friend where abstaining from secular activities from Friday evening to Saturday evening caused difficulties.

Some are not so bad: my wife received poor grades in a few required college courses because they had sessions on Saturday and she could not attend.
Others are more difficult: many SDA Christians would rather leave their jobs than “break the Sabbath”

Clearly, I am not talking about serious persecution here; rather I am giving an example of how being a Christian can result in a form of descrimination.

I also see that there is a distinction here that this kind of challenge is more a result of the person not being available on a day rather than disagreement with beliefs. Nevertheless, some perfectly decent folks end up losing their jobs because of their religion.

And I’m convinced that someone who would give up their very livelihood in order not to break a religious rule must believe so strongly in that rule that it is not a matter of simply deciding whether or not to be Christian (in a similar vein to what Libertarian said).

I apologize for not including my cite for my last point. cite

And another one:

Members of a Westfield High School (in MA) Bible club were suspended for distributing candy canes with a religious message on them. They were subsequently vindicated in the courts. cite1. cite2.

Garfield226, while I am finding that your cites are informative, I would like to pin you down on the position that you are taking here.

Are you stating that Christians, as a group, are a minority that are systemically discriminated against by US society, or are you simply digging up a few instances were discrimination has happened to Christians?

I’m stating that the OP’s assertion that Christians are not being persecuted for their beliefs but because they are idiots or breaking some law is false.

I’m gonna call foul too! As a black man I take offense to you even comparing your so called discrimination of christians to the discrimation that blacks and gays experience.

Show me some laws against Christianity.

Show me some housing disrimination, employment discrimination, show me a Klan equivalent or a Fred Phelps equivalent.

Show me some Driving while Christian police stops.

Show me some Christians being dragged by a truck, or beaten and left to die.

You’re compairing some school meeting place issues to those? Cry me a fucking river! They aren’t even remotely fucking comparable dickhead.

The main reason for this, I believe, is that there Messiah was a martyr, so they aspire to martyrdom. However, when the can’t find any real persecution, they don’t hesitate to invent or perceive it to fulfill their ideaology…

Whether this perception of oppression is malicious or benign in intent may well be the crux of the debate.

Stuffy, I certainly hope you weren’t directing that at my post. I simply was trying to offer a possible example of very common day-to-day problems faced by some Christians with no attempt at comparing it to hard-core discrimination. I wouldn’t dream of diminishing the existence or effects of the caustic and illegal treatment you describe.

I guess that I asked the question in a way that was less than clear. See, I took this quote by the OP:

as a claim that there is, in fact, no institutionalized discrimination against Christians. You have shown instances where Christians have, arguably, faced discrimination but I am sure that you can see how these are two different things.

So I am willing to take it as proven that some people have faced discrimination because of their beliefs. I guess that in general I don’t find that very interesting. This is not to say that I as an individual would not stand up for someone if I saw this happening, but from the larger societal context I don’t find it very meaningful because it is not systemic.

If, on the other hand, you would like to state that discrimination against Christians is systemic and institutionalized, that would be an interesting conversation.

I took “institutional” to mean “imposed by an institution,” which public schools and colleges certainly are.

While I’m not sure at what point something becomes “systemic,” I’m certainly not claiming that ALL Christians are discriminated against, or that it’s even happening a lot. The first post never used the term “institutionalized,” and I didn’t happen to read the OPer’s mind before I replied.
I read the OP as saying that Christians simply aren’t discriminated against due to their beliefs, and I took offense to that statement.

And to stuffy:
Hey, “dickhead,” how about you read my first post in the thread:

I’ve already acknowledged your point.

The OP stated that Christians aren’t discriminated against because they’re Christians. I stated that that was as absurd as saying that there are black people who aren’t discriminated against because they’re black. I was not saying they are discriminated against as much, or in the same ways as other groups. I stated that it happens. It does.

Niether black people nor gays nor Christians hold a monopoly on being discriminated against, and it’s not ok to discriminate against a group “just a little bit,” or just because they’re not one of the recognized minorities.

**Garfield226[/cb] - The cites you bring up do not show cases of Christians being discriminated against because they are Christians, but rather cases in which separation of church and state concerns were applied in arguably silly, paranoid or over-the-top ways. I don’t see anything here to suggest that the decisions would have been different if the group or groups in question had been Jewish, Muslim, or Wiccan.

Pssst! Look behind you!

Sorry minor7flat5 I wasn’t speaking to you. I was talking to Garfield.

Who went on to say:

Using the analogy the way you did is complete fucking bullshit. What I mentioned is discrimination, what you mention is mere inconvience and PCism run amok. They aren’t in the same league, the same ball park or even the same fucking State!!!

Nor did I claim they did. But using those cites of your as proof of discrimation, is to water the down the term so much as to not have any meaning. Get a clue.

Stuffy said:

Using the analogy the way you did is complete fucking bullshit. What I mentioned is discrimination, what you mention is mere inconvience and PCism run amok. They aren’t in the same league, the same ball park or even the same fucking State!!!**

Please explain how, if a Christian group isn’t allowed to start a group (wrongly), it’s “mere inconvenience” and “PCism run amok.”

Is it safe to assume you’d hold the same opinion if it were a black culture group, or PFLAG or somesuch?

So it doesn’t count as discrimination against blacks if you also discriminate against hispanics and native americans? You can parse it however you want, but the examples cited are are cases of discrimination based on religious belief. The examples cited specifically involved discrimination against Christians. That meets the request for cites.

Age, Vooddochile’s anti-religious stance is not discrimination. It is exercising choice, something we all do every day. In no way does that demonstrate pervasive, institutional prejudice. The we have Christian/Atheist drinking fountains, or “No dogs or Christians allowed” signs in public parks, then you might have a case. In case you haven’t noticed, Christianity boasts the greatest number of adherents in this country. The vast majority of our leaders, including the president, are open about their Christian faith. Christian churches and bookstores abound. Christians are not persecuted–you run this country. Criminy!

Nor are Garfield’s cites persuasive. I asked him for non-First Amendment cases and what does he give me? First Amendment cases in which the Christians won! Sorry, pal, but Stuffy’s got your number.

Because the Supremes has issued murky decisions regarding SOCAS, you have the situations you’re citing. Your instances are policies that were inacted so that schools could avoid SOCAS issues in their entirety. These in no way whotsover compare to actual forms of discrimination I mentioned. If you can’t see that, you’re an idiot.

Is it safe to assume you’d hold the same opinion if it were a black culture group, or PFLAG or somesuch?


Show me a comparable situation or keep your strawmen on your own fucking field.

You want some cites where school systems have eliminated all non-curriculum related clubs in order to avoid allowing a Gay-Straight Alliance? That is discrimination.

That was for Garfield226 btw.