Subject: Harassment, Christian style Date: 23 Mar 91 16:57:03 GMT From the Jan/Feb 1991 is

Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

From: Newsgroups: talk.religion.misc Subject: Harassment, Christian style Message-ID: <> Date: 23 Mar 91 16:57:03 GMT From the Jan/Feb 1991 issue of the freethinker newspaper "Freethought Today," a rather disturbing example of Christian intolerance and downright nastiness. A couple in Waunakee, Wisconsin, Pat and Joe King, protested to the local town council about the erection of a creche in a city park in Waunakee, correctly pointing out that this was a rather clear violation of "church/state" separation and that the U.S. Supreme Court had stated that such a religious display on public land was illegal. In an attempt to be as reasonable as possible, Pat King suggested that the creche be rotated among any interested Waunakee churches, since there was no objection to such a display on church property. The Kings were ignored by the town council, and were the targets of some of the most unbelievable harassment imaginable by local Christians. Below is the entire text of the article "Plaintiffs Harassed by Community", which appears on p. 3 of the aforementioned newspaper. Perhaps some Christians on this group might like to comment on the rather questionable behaviour of their spiritual kin. ================================================= Plaintiffs Harassed by Community, by Anne Nicol Gaylor Perhaps the strongest argument that can be made for the wisdom of church/state separation can be found in the treatment of those who dare to protest church/state entanglement. When Dr. Patricia Smith King and Dr. Joseph J. King, Jr., made public their opposition to the Christian worship scene in the Waunakee, Wisconsin city park in early December, the city literally turned on them. The Kings were not "outsiders." They had purchased a home in Waunakee. Pat King had contributed many hundreds of hours of volunteer work for the community, working in the schools and the parks, speaking to civic groups. An educated, talented, pleasant couple, they would be regarded as an asset by almost any community. Yet their thoughtful letters to their city officials went unacknowledged. Their attempt to reason with officials was rebuffed. At a mock "public hearing," the officials' vote to keep the creche was taken before citizens could give their views. City officials were behind a rally in the park at the site of the creche, a rally whose theme was to keep the creche. The Village President spoke at that rally. When the Kings went to shop in local stores, they were met all over town with canisters on counters inviting shoppers to contribute to legal action to keep the creche. They received several anonymous Christmas greetings with nasty messages. And the phone harassment was breathtaking. Here are some of the messages, as ->recorded<- by the Kings, from a variety of callers, mostly male. (Please note Freethought Today rarely publishes four-letter words or vulgarities. We do it now so the Christian harassment record is clear.) Caller: "I want you to keep the hell out of this nativity thing, you fucking bitch." Caller: "If you don't like the nativity scene in the park, get out of town." Caller: "Assholes." Caller: "Fuck you, you sleazy cunt, we'll get you." Caller: "You people are real assholes, I mean real assholes. Why not take away everything decent that's left in America?" Caller: "Why don't you people get to hell out of town and leave this nativity scene alone?" Caller: "If you don't quit fucking with the town of Waunakee, someone's going to be fucking with you!" Patricia Smith, whom one caller referred to as Satan, reported these taped calls to police, and changed their number to an unlisted number. The Foundation staff [Freedom from Religion Foundation -- rday] received harassing phone calls at home throughout much of December on this issue as well, including one death threat. Both of Madison's daily newspapers went on record for the removal of the creche, which was gratifying. And the editor of the weekly "Isthmus", Bill Lueders, opened his column on the subject with an inspired query: "Was Jesus Christ a foul-mouthed, mean-spirited, misogynistic thug? If not, some of his followers apparently have gotten the wrong message." ============= end of article ============== Comments, anyone?


E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank