The matters of faith is a personal one, but there is also the sticky issue of boundaries. Just where does one’s faith overlap the boundaries of another, and what are some of the compromises or understandings that can be made? Are there decisions which will negatively affect the emotions and stability of another individual, and would one be so grieved beyond consolation? It is rather absurd to say that the image of the cross is offensive simply because one does not adhere to the Christian faith, but this seems to be the case when an atheist activist group filed a complaint against a Georgia county courthouse, causing a Christian flag to be removed.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), which is based in Wisconsin, has sent a letter to the clerk of courts at the Bryan County Courthouse on July 6. This letter held demands for the flag to be removed from the presence of the courtroom. What is the basis for that particular demand? It seems that the flag was offensive, where it is white and blue in color while sporting a red cross. This particular flag was created more than a hundred years ago -- in 1897, in fact, as part of an effort to honor the Christian faith, where it has since been tucked away in the corner by the judge’s bench.
Attorney Elizabeth Cavell mentioned, “It has been said that the white in the flag represents the biblical conceptions of purity, the blue in the flag represents the baptism in water, and the red color of the cross is symbolic of the sacrifice Jesus Christ made when He was crucified. The inherent religious significance of the Christian flag and Latin cross is undeniable and is not disguisable. No secular purpose, no matter how sincere, will detract from the overall message that the flag stands for Christianity and the overall display promotes Christianity.”
According to Cavell, this flag is then a violation of the Constitution’s Establishment Clause, where it reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
Cavell further continued, “The display of these patently religious symbols on county property confers government endorsement of Christianity, a blatant violation of the Establishment Clause.”