Of Locusts, Lincoln, and the Lord
As millions of locusts swarmed through Israel over the weekend, some commentators are already speaking of Biblical symbolism and omens. Even here in the U.S., the debate over religion and moral values continues on an almost daily basis.
So, here comes a report (discussed here) that religious conservatives are angry about accompanying films and books at various national parks. A film depicting historic marches at the Lincoln Memorial, for example, includes images of pro-choice, civil rights, and gay marches, and it is now the target of a Christian conservative group that wants it pulled from the monument. The Rev. Lou Sheldon, chairman of"Traditional Values Coalition," was angered to see this"pro-homosexual, pro-abortion" film on view, and National Park Service personnel are being asked to edit out the offending images at considerable cost to taxpayers. An ABC World News Tonight report tells us that it's all about"who controls the portrayal of history," a drama which"has been playing out in national parks across the country" from the Lincoln Memorial to the Grand Canyon. In a bookstore at the latter site, a book is on sale which states that the Grand Canyon was formed by the Lord at the time of Noah and the Great Flood. Scientists are now protesting the inclusion of this book in a national park service establishment; they believe it is a"slap" against science.
In the meanwhile, Sheldon is gleeful; he tells us that during the Clinton administration, Christian conservatives felt as if they"lived in outer Siberia." With the Bush administration retaining power,"it's like we died and went to heaven."
Verily I say to thee, in my idea of heaven, all property is privatized and the people who own this property can show anything they want as long as their actions don't violate anybody else's rights.
As I said, this is my idea of heaven. Back on earth, however, public property exists and flourishes, and battles over the content on public display in films and books are inevitable.
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