Alabama Gazette - The people's voice of reason

Do the Pastafarians ridicule the First Amendment?

 


So what in the world is a Pastafarian? The Pastafarians “worship” the Flying Spaghetti Monster and their “church” may also be referred to as the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

It seems in 2005, that a Bobby Henderson wrote a letter to the Kansas State Board of Education complaining about their decision to teach intelligent design/ creationism in addition to evolution. In his letter he argues against intelligent design and said that any time a scientist carbon dates any object that a spaghetti and meatballs type “creator” is changing the results with his “noodly appendages.” Apparently this satirical belief system became rather popular among those opposing creation as outlined in the Bible.

It seems that their ridicule of religion is not confined to Judeo-Christian beliefs. A woman in Massachusetts has now presumably mocked those religions that wear head attire which not only include certain Jews, but also some of the religions that arise from the “Near Eastern” nations comprising the old Ottoman Empire, including a few from beyond that area. She finally won the right to be photographed wearing a colander on her head for her driver’s license photograph. A Texas Pastafarian in 2013 had previously won that right to be photographed with a colander on his head.

My wife has asked me why I am giving any sort of recognition to these people. She is right to ask that question and I think of my wife as a wise woman. My answer lies in the liberal mockery that has replaced reason in the interpretation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.

The men that wrote the most powerful governing document the world has ever known was written by men, mostly men of Faith whose religious roots were in Christianity. These men knew that by example in England it did not work well to declare a state sponsored religion and even among the several states there were those that had an endorsed or majority religion. Connecticut for example was mostly Congregationalist. Thomas Jefferson responded to the Danbury Baptists who were concerned about being a minority denomination. Framed by those that wrote the First Amendment, the Establishment Clause read, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; . . . .”.

This was a time when only free white men voted and I would think that it was not anticipated that there would ever be a significant percentage of voters who were not Christian. If that was in fact the thinking then I would believe it was a matter of not wanting a particular religion (denomination) to become predominant to a point of influencing politics, the government and laws.

Now through the years the Courts have interpreted the Constitution in a manner that the government, whether that be Federal, State or Local shall not do anything that will “endorse” one religion over all others and shall for the most part make exception for those religions who request inclusion in holiday displays.

The Courts have typically allowed holiday religious symbols (Christmas, Hanukkah) when displayed with secular symbols (Christmas tree, Santa Claus, etc) or when considered in a historical context.

Two years ago, the State of Florida allowed groups to display their symbols during the Christmas and Hanukkah seasons. Christians displayed a manger scene. One atheist group displayed a banner for the winter solstice and another atheist group displayed a Festivus Pole made of beer cans. The Pastsfarians displayed a pile of holy noodles. Satanists petitioned to provide a display of an angel falling into a pit of fire, which was rejected, but was apparently allowed in 2014 after the legal team for the Satanists made a case for their display.

The Bible tells us of the birth of Christ and how it was foretold in the Old Testament including where it would occur. God directed both the lowly shepherds and the wise men from the East to visit the baby Jesus and to worship Him. The birth of a child is always a special occasion; these very small humans have successfully left the security of the womb and fall into the hands of people that love them. These children represent a new beginning of hope and expectation. How much more hope does the birth of a Savior bring to those who have had no hope?

Christmas is not however the primary reason for Christian celebration. While the birth of Christ is celebrated in the Bible by those made aware by God, it is not a designated holiday nor the primary reason for hope in Christ. The primary reason for hope in Christ is that through His example of resurrection we know He is the Son of the true and living God the Father and that through God’s grace and salvation by faith, Christians are promised an afterlife with Him. That is our only hope.

Regardless of your faith, I hope that each of you have a wonderful Christmas, Hanukkah and/ or Kwanza. God bless you, everyone!

This article is informative only and not meant to be all inclusive. Additionally this article does not serve as legal advice to the reader and does not constitute an attorney- client relationship. The reader should seek counsel from their attorney should any questions exist.

"No representation is made that the quality of legal services performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers."

Ronald A. Holtsford, Esq. • Ronald A. Holtsford, LLC • 7956 Vaughn Road, Box #124 • Montgomery, AL 36116 • (334) 220-3700 • raholtsford@aol.com

 

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