Update on Loudoun County Holiday Displays September 9, 2010

Update on Loudoun County Holiday Displays

Last we heard, the Virginia Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli, was weighing in on whether Loudoun County should allow all religious displays on government property or none at all:

… it is my opinion that a local governmental entity is never categorically compelled to prohibit holiday displays, including those incorporating recognizably religious symbols, because governments enjoy considerable discretion in accommodating the religious expression of their citizens and employees and in their own recognition of traditional seasonal holidays. It is further my opinion that displays depicting the birth of Jesus Christ are permissible provided the government ensures appropriate content and context.

Looks like he got his way. Last night, county officials voted to allow all holiday displays:

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors voted Wednesday to uphold a current policy that allows for unattended displays, including religious displays, to be placed on the public grounds of the county courthouse.

The motion to maintain the current policy was passed 8 to 1 with Supervisor Stevens Miller (D-Dulles) opposed.

Like I said last time, that’s fine with me.

But I hope some group can get an atheist sign or Flying Spaghetti Monster statue included in the mix.

(Thanks to Ubi Dubium for the link!)

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  • That is still a governmnet entity endorsing a religious belief.

    I would really like to see local atheists put up FSM stuff and whatnot, but it simply wont happen.

    I wonder, since anything is allowed, how about a good old fashioned cross burning.

  • Jagyr

    Yup, legally it’s either everything or nothing. Personally, I suggest nothing because it’s easier, but everything is a legitimate choice as well. Hopefully (fir the city/county) no huge controversy comes out of the decision, but I too would like to see some kind of display endorsing non-belief.

  • Kamaka

    It is further my opinion that displays depicting the birth of Jesus Christ are permissible provided the government ensures appropriate content and context.

    And what might the appropriate content and context be?

    We know this is all phony-balony, but people really, really like it?

    Here’s my display, a great big sign:

    Virgin birth? You must be kidding!
    Santa doesn’t deliver hymens, does he?

  • Neon Genesis

    Can someone call up Fred Phelps and ask him to put up a sign? That should get rid of them all real quick.

  • Claudia

    Well, personally I think it would be much simpler to disallow religious displays of any sort, but allowing any holiday displays strikes me as a legitimate alternative.

    Now it would be fun to add one display a day. Jesus will be first, but then add something with Allah, then Buddha, Vishnu, Mithras, FSM…and on and on until the place is hoplessly crowded. It will either teach them about how inconvenient opening that door is or educate the public about the huge numbers of gods out there, which is actually even better.

  • I live in Fairfax county. If I were in a position to do it, I would totally put an FSM display down next to one of the nativity scenes which will doubtlessly be planted in a town center.

  • JoeBuddha

    I’d be TOTALLY into a Mithra display; something on the order of the alternative version of the manger scene (with appropriate documentation, that is). I think everyone should know their roots; especially Christians.

  • Some talented artist should make a sculpture depicting Ken Cuccinelli (clad in a red cardinal robe and the Virginia Attorney General crest) passing judgment on the various religious displays.

  • Noir The Sable

    I may be in Baltimore at the moment, but I do have a friend currently living up in Ashburn, which is on the eastern side of Loudoun. I’ll see if I can convince him to drop off something FSM for me (doubt he will, but it’s worth a shot).

  • muggle

    Shoot, you don’t even have to get fancy. Do something along the orders of what FFRF does.

    Of course, that wouldn’t overwhelm. But you’d have to get a lot of people to put a lot of different things up that the Xians would hate. Doubtful you’re going to be able to. Love to see people try. How large is this place? Any Wiccan? Muslims? A Bhuddist statue? Something Satanic?

    Ahh, I dream. But, man, wouldn’t receiving a good dose of their own medicine be a sweet thing?

  • Kayla

    Since no one actually believes in or worships the “Flying Spaghetti Monster”, why would someone try to put up a statue or other commemoration?

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