If You’re Trying to Get Rid of Religion, It’s Gonna’ Be a Long Haul

When the “Freedom From Religion Foundation” (FFRF) and other atheist crusaders put on their big-boy pants and go after religious symbols on postal workers and bureaucrats, Christmas trees at the White House or Holiday Menorahs on Sunset Blvd in Beverly Hills, I’ll believe they are sincere about being “free from religion” (except for their own). For now, they only seem to have the stones for bullying a bunch of high-school kids in Leeds, Alabama.

A Christmas performance in front of the White House with a large Christmas tree
A performance by Yolanda Adams for the National Christmas Tree Lighting in December, 2016

Now we all need something to do in our otherwise unused hours. Evidently these guys aren’t into TV and I can’t blame them for that. But if they’re going to take on the hobby of getting rid of public religious symbols, wow… do they have their work cut out for them! Religious symbols are so entwined with government in the United States that it makes the Gordian Knot look like a shoelace.

However in the interest of pure entertainment, let me offer a possible plan of conquest for the FFRF in their great crusade.

First start with the Leeds High School Science Department. The depiction of an atom happens to also be the symbol for the Atheist religion, so get out your magic markers and start in redacting that symbol from the texts books.

After that, hit a few police and firefighter’s funerals and ram some potatoes down the bag pipes playing “Amazing Grace.” I’m sure the mourners will understand.

Next morning, head over to the FCC. Those guys need to know that virtually all rock ’n’ roll is based on African-American gospel music and they need to get busy pulling station licenses across the country.
A cross in the Arlington National Cemetery
A cross at the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, where more than 400,000 fallen American soldiers are buried.

Then round up a few volunteers for an outing to Arlington National Cemetery where you can knock down any crosses, Stars of David, etc. and then chisel off all the religious symbols on the gravestones.

After that, move on over to the Pentagon with a couple of five-gallon buckets from Home Depot and start collecting all those Navy, Army and Air Force Crosses. Then, on the way out, have the Chiefs of Staff fire all the chaplains in all branches of the service. That should make for a good first day.

Next morning, head over to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Those guys need to know that virtually all rock ’n’ roll is based on African-American gospel music and they need to get busy pulling station licenses across the country. TV stations that use public airwaves need to make sure all references to anything in anyway religious are scrubbed or have their licenses pulled as well. I’m sure FFRF will get the FCC’s full cooperation.

On the second day, the FFRF can go see the head of the Federal Reserve Bank and tell him to get rid of that pyramid with the eye thingy at the top on dollar bills, since that is the symbol of the Cao Dai religion. Then move on to the buildings: the Washington Monument? Egyptian religion. Anything with a Grecian or Roman column has to go as it represents polytheism. These include the Houses of Congress, the Supreme Court building and the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials. I’m sure the National Park Service will get right on it.

The Smithsonian Institution’s first building
The Smithsonian Institution’s first building, The Castle.

On the third day comes the BIGGIE: the Smithsonian Institution. In there you have acres and acres of stuff with religious symbolism. Anything with a word or symbol denoting spirits or gods has got to go. Charles Lindbergh’s plane, the “Spirit” of Saint Louis, Native American art of all types… OMG, there is ten years’ worth of work right there.

Once Washington D.C. has been straightened out, they can start on the days of the week, the names of which are from Norse Polytheism and Greek and Roman Astrology…

No wait. I’ve got an idea. Since their work will go on for generations and prove unpopular to the general public, the FFRF needs to lobby Congress to create an entire bureaucracy for the purpose. That way they can have all their lawyers paid for and a great retirement plan. It also needs a better name. One you can make a nice pronounceable acronym with. That everyone can relate to. That better reflects their nature. Hmmm… got it! The Foundation to Abolish Religious Terminology and Symbols. Yeah. That works.

Rodger Clark
Contractor, history buff, compulsive learner, currently in recovery from authoritarian education.