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Supreme Court reconstruction

Should the Supreme Court building be reconstructed to exclude Moses?

  • Yes

    Votes: 2 28.6%
  • No

    Votes: 5 71.4%

  • Total voters
    7
T

The Real McCoy

I'm interested in what the separation of church and state extremists have to say on this matter. Since it's well known that Moses (one of the greatest prophets in the Bible) is a figure in the pediment above the Supreme Court entrance, is this a violation of the First Amendment and should taxpayer money be used to reconstruct the pediment to exclude Moses? I say no. Your thoughts?
 

Kandahar

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Where's the option for "No, and this poll is a straw man."
 

Kandahar

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The Real McCoy said:
Straw man? How so?
Because most "separation of church and state extremists," as you call us, don't believe that the federal government has to pretend that all religious works do not exist. Moses may have been a religious figure, but he was also a literary figure and his presence in front of the Supreme Court can be interpreted as having secular meanings too. For example, Moses was a lawgiver, so a statue of him in front of the Supreme Court is appropriate. The mere fact that his book of origin was religious in nature is not a reason to exclude the symbolism, as long as it's not an endorsement of that religion.

This is different than, say, the Ten Commandments. You can say that they're good morals for anyone regardless of religion, but things like "Thou shalt have no god before me" are inherently religious in nature. Displaying them in a courtroom seems to be an endorsement of those values (except the part about "graven images" :roll: )
 

shuamort

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I guess I'm an "extremist" for seperation of Church and State. I voted "no" on reconstruction of the frieze.

Snopes has a great article about this here.
The sculpture was intended to be a symbolic representation of three of the Eastern civilizations from which our laws were derived, personified by the figures of three great lawgivers: Moses, Confucius, and Solon (surrounded by several allegorical figures representing a variety of legal themes):

McNeil described the symbolism of his work thusly:

Law as an element of civilization was normally and naturally derived or inherited in this country from former civilizations. The "Eastern Pediment" of the Supreme Court Building suggests therefore the treatment of such fundamental laws and precepts as are derived from the East. Moses, Confucius and Solon are chosen as representing three great civilizations and form the central group of this Pediment.

Note also that the two other lawgiver figures (Confucius and Solon) are not "facing [the] one in the middle" (i.e., Moses) as claimed here — all three of the lawgivers are depicted in full frontral views, facing forward. (The allegorical figures who flank the lawgivers are facing towards the middle, but they are looking in the direction of all three men, not just Moses.) And although many viewers might assume Moses is holding a copy of the Ten Commandments in this depiction, the two tablets in his arms are actually blank.
(bolded for amusement).

On the same frieze is a tortoise and the hare as well.
 
T

The Real McCoy

Kandahar said:
Because most "separation of church and state extremists," as you call us, don't believe that the federal government has to pretend that all religious works do not exist. Moses may have been a religious figure, but he was also a literary figure and his presence in front of the Supreme Court can be interpreted as having secular meanings too. For example, Moses was a lawgiver, so a statue of him in front of the Supreme Court is appropriate. The mere fact that his book of origin was religious in nature is not a reason to exclude the symbolism, as long as it's not an endorsement of that religion.

This is different than, say, the Ten Commandments. You can say that they're good morals for anyone regardless of religion, but things like "Thou shalt have no god before me" are inherently religious in nature. Displaying them in a courtroom seems to be an endorsement of those values (except the part about "graven images" :roll: )
By "separation of church and state extremists" I'm refering to the fringe minority of Americans who oppose crosses as memorials along side public highways and similar cases.. as opposed to mainstream Americans who find such thinking absurd.

You admit Moses was a literary figure as well as a religious one but was Jesus Christ himself any different? Jesus was a law giver as well but could you imagine the uproar from the extreme secular crowd if sculptures of Christ were to be erected on government buildings?

I can understand the argument against the Ten Commandments on public property but what about a cross? It happens to be the symbol of Christianity but that fact shouldn't exclude it from public property, it's simply 2 perpindicular lines and the basic shape of a human with their arms outstretched.
 
T

The Real McCoy

shuamort said:
I guess I'm an "extremist" for seperation of Church and State. I voted "no" on reconstruction of the frieze.

Snopes has a great article about this here.


And although many viewers might assume Moses is holding a copy of the Ten Commandments in this depiction, the two tablets in his arms are actually blank.

(bolded for amusement).

On the same frieze is a tortoise and the hare as well.
And what exactly do those blank tablets represent?

What does a blank cross represent if a sculpture of Christ's body isn't attached to it?
 

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Off times the fanatics in the culture war are not the believers ,but. The Nonebelievers.
 

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The Real McCoy said:
And what exactly do those blank tablets represent?
The Ten Commandments
The Real McCoy said:
What does a blank cross represent if a sculpture of Christ's body isn't attached to it?
Usually Christianity.

Do I get my Cupie doll now?
 

shuamort

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JOHNYJ said:
Off times the fanatics in the culture war are not the believers ,but. The Nonebelievers.
Nice claim, prove it.
 

Kandahar

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JOHNYJ said:
Off times the fanatics in the culture war are not the believers ,but. The Nonebelievers.
The difference is that the fanatical believers actually exist, whereas the fanatical nonbelievers are an invention of the fanatical believers to make their own ideas seem less loony.
 
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I voted no for an obvious reason. As someone else illuded, Moses is not the only religious figure depicted in the Supreme Court building. In fact there are depictions, sculptures, and engravings of Menes, Hammurabi, Solomon, Lycurgus, Solon, Draco, Confucius, Octavian, Justinian, Mohammed, Charlemagne, King John, Louis IX, Hugo Grotius, Sir William Blackstone, John Marshall, Napoleon, and various Greek and Roman gods and godesses. People make such a big deal about those 2 tablets with the 10 Roman numerals engraved on them but they are NOT representative of the tablets of the 10 commandments. The DESIGNER of them said that the roman numerals stood for the first 10 ammendments to the Constitution not for the 10 commandments.
 

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shuamort said:
Nice claim, prove it.
In one midwestern school district the teachers took the Christmas Carol,Silent Night.Changed the words to make it secular and made the children sing it. In a neighboring town to me the High school not only forbade the singing of any religious christmas carol,but. The playing of any that had religious themes. So jingle bells was in,the Messiah was out.Some of the greatest classical music ever written was not allowed . Yes its obvious the anti-Christmas forces are the fanatics.Its proven by their actions.
 
H

hipsterdufus

The Real McCoy said:
I'm interested in what the separation of church and state extremists have to say on this matter. Since it's well known that Moses (one of the greatest prophets in the Bible) is a figure in the pediment above the Supreme Court entrance, is this a violation of the First Amendment and should taxpayer money be used to reconstruct the pediment to exclude Moses? I say no. Your thoughts?
If Moses is naked then I say Ashcroft should come out of his lobbyist position and cover Moses' pecker up.
 
T

The Real McCoy

hipsterdufus said:
If Moses is naked then I say Ashcroft should come out of his lobbyist position and cover Moses' pecker up.
Nice.

.....
 

shuamort

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JOHNYJ said:
In one midwestern school district the teachers took the Christmas Carol,Silent Night.Changed the words to make it secular and made the children sing it. In a neighboring town to me the High school not only forbade the singing of any religious christmas carol,but. The playing of any that had religious themes. So jingle bells was in,the Messiah was out.Some of the greatest classical music ever written was not allowed . Yes its obvious the anti-Christmas forces are the fanatics.Its proven by their actions.
So far you've proven that a school district is becoming secular and not "anti-Christmas" as you're claiming.
 

tryreading

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The Real McCoy said:
By "separation of church and state extremists" I'm refering to the fringe minority of Americans who oppose crosses as memorials along side public highways and similar cases.. as opposed to mainstream Americans who find such thinking absurd.
Crosses used for memorials on public highways like the ones individuals place there because a loved one was killed there are fine.

If you mean Crosses installed by government, those are not fine. Our government can't promote Christianity.
 

tryreading

Steve
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JOHNYJ said:
In one midwestern school district the teachers took the Christmas Carol,Silent Night.Changed the words to make it secular and made the children sing it. In a neighboring town to me the High school not only forbade the singing of any religious christmas carol,but. The playing of any that had religious themes. So jingle bells was in,the Messiah was out.Some of the greatest classical music ever written was not allowed . Yes its obvious the anti-Christmas forces are the fanatics.Its proven by their actions.
You should visit the 'War on Christmas' thread where there is a post explaining the Silent Night issue you got from Bill O'Reilly, and what a ridiculous lie the story was.
 
T

The Real McCoy

tryreading said:
Crosses used for memorials on public highways like the ones individuals place there because a loved one was killed there are fine.

If you mean Crosses installed by government, those are not fine. Our government can't promote Christianity.
The issue isn't over who placed them but where they were placed, although I agree with you 100%.
 
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