- The Washington Times - Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Feb. 19 Page One article: “Racy William & Mary exhibit leaves some cross,” caught my attention, and reaffirmed my conviction that too many of our University presidents and religious and/or political leaders have it all wrong in their judgments of religious objectivity and/or tolerance based on diversity.

These leaders more often replace good for evil as the College of William & Mary’s President Gene Nichol did to appease a potential Jewish student with his decision to remove the historic Wren Chapel’s cross: At the same time, he ironically allowed “an art show that displayed male and female strippers, escorts and prostitutes in various states of undress to express themselves.”

But is it the practice of a religious university to cancel and censor crosses because they are controversial and might discourage the registration of non-Christians? If a Jewish student does not want to be subjected to crosses, he should go to a Jewish university. A Christian who does not want to be subjected to Stars of David should go to a Christian university. If either one goes to a state-run university, he is to show respect for other people’s religious symbols: That’s true tolerance and objectivity.

Also, an observant Christian will pray in the name of Jesus. That’s an important part of his or her faith. An observant Jewish person, of course, will pray directly to G-d: That is an important part of our faith. If one is an atheist, agnostic, Muslim, Buddhist, or Hindu or a Christian who does not use crosses, etc. — they too will pray or not pray according to their unique dictates of their own hearts: That is true diversity — being objective enough to not be offended by the differences in one another, be it religious, skin color or any other differences.

Our Creator knows when we are sincere or not, no matter what approach we chose to connect with G-d. However, removing crosses, the Ten Commandments or the words “In G-d we trust” on our currency, only leads to intolerance and a G-d-less-society that leads to communism, not true spiritual values related to our American Judaic-Christian culture.

As in the current movie “Breach,” have we become like Robert Hannsen, the American Catholic spy who lived a life of hypocrisy? However, fortunately, the younger Catholic FBI agent proved there are good and bad people in all religions and organizations. He proved he was a good Catholic and became the hero of the movie because he stood up for his country’s survival and faced the truth about his boss and his boss’ double life.

This is what we all have to do in America. Make that distinction between the holy and the profane people in our respective religions and political affiliations. A distinction between good and evil that we now see playing out in G-d’s name that is really mocking G-d when we all should seek to be more tolerant and objective toward each other and also more honest about how our country conducts foreign policy.

We have to ask ourselves: Do we make decisions to appease the wrong people for monetary rewards or is America willing to make the sacrifices necessary to save our beloved country’s self-respect and our country’s freedom and sovereignty for future generations? Removing crosses, and/or the Ten Commandments, etc., another bone of contention, is not the America way to maintain our once-proud heritage, that is, our heritage of objectivity and our overall safety based on G-d’s Divine blessings and our recognition of a Higher Authority to Whom we must answer.

The William & Mary decision to give in to the pressures of more enrollment vs. its long historic religious values, will not bode well for America. Indeed, are strippers and prostitutes what we want to replace religious symbols with in America? This is absurd. No wonder our enemies feel they have the upper hand. We have to really get a grip on this defect in our American leadership character. It’s starting to look like the ugly American, instead of the wonderful patriotic American I used to be proud of during the Reagan years.

BARBARA ANN FENNELL BLOOM

Peace Through Torah Truth Inc.

Owings Mills, Md.


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