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SCVNews.com | Opinion/Commentary: I Was Wrong: There’s No War on ‘Religion’ | 08-26-2013
Santa Clarita CA
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1961 - CalArts grad (MFA '92) and marine biologist Stephen Hillenburg, creator of Spongebob SquarePants, born in Oklahoma; developed prototype for Spongebob while studying at CalArts in 1989. Estimated net worth in 2012: $90 million [story]

The Real Side | Commentary by Joe Messina
| Monday, Aug 26, 2013

joemessinamugI’ve been railing lately about the apparent war on religion in this country. On the radio show I hear story after story about someone’s religious freedom being challenged. But I was wrong. When I went back and reviewed this “war,” I realized it was all aimed at Christians. Yes, Christians. Skeptical? Take a look.

In getting ready for my weekly shows, there is no shortage of “Christian-esque” events being cancelled or moved from public grounds because someone from the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), to whom I fondly refer as the Freedom From Religion Freaks, sent a letter, filed suit, and made a stink.

For instance, a bakery in Oregon refused to make a cake for a gay wedding. It went against their religious beliefs. OMG (that’s Oh My Goodness for those not in the know), it’s time to tar and feather them.

But wait. They have a right to practice their Christian faith, don’t they? Not in Oregon, where lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders (LGBT) are protected from being discriminated against.

Were there no other bakeries? What would happen if a Christian couple were denied service at an LGBT-owned bakery because the owners were uncomfortable making a cake that looked like Jesus, or the sign of the cross with a scripture about men leaving the natural use of their bodies (Romans 1:27), or the one that says, “when a man finds a wife he finds a good thing”? Would there be equal protection under the law?

Then there was the Christian photographer couple in Colorado who was fined more than $6,000 for refusing to photograph a gay wedding. The photographers declined the request, saying they couldn’t accept the job because their religious scripture says it’s a sin. Wouldn’t you want the person who would capture your joyous occasion to be someone who understood the moment?

The gay couple filed a complaint, resulting in a stiff fine for not shooting the wedding. What if the reverse happened and a Christian couple asked to have their traditional family wedding (complete with lots of scripture and “God talk”) photographed? What if the gay couple who owned the photography business said they would be too uncomfortable to shoot the wedding? Would there be equal protection under the law?

If I owned a store and simply refused to serve people who believed in global warming or the Second Amendment or who wore offensive T-shirts, would I be sued? Not a chance. Why? Because it has nothing to do with a religious belief, especially not Christianity.

In several cases, female Muslims have fought to win the right wear a hijab while working in a theme park. Let that sink in for a moment (most people working in a theme park are in costume or a uniform). Yet, employees and students have been told they cannot wear a cross around their neck because it might offend someone. Is that equal protection under the law?

How many cases have you heard of a menorah being removed from a public place during the holidays? Or a Jew asked to remove his yarmulke because it “may offend someone?” It seems like the stories against Christians are 100 to 1.

Recently, a mother in Connecticut was stopped from praying at the entry to a school (on the sidewalk), which she did because she learned there was ammunition found on school grounds. She prayed as the kids came in. She had been doing it for months until the FFRF called the school to threaten legal action. Yet some public schools have prayer rooms for Muslim students, on school grounds, during school hours, and that’s OK.

Your tax dollars pay to accommodate Muslim prayer in school. But it’s not OK for Christians.

If you see stories about attacks on any religion, feel free to forward them on to me (Joe@TheRealSide.com). I’m interested in all of them. But I can tell you, percentage-wise, the primary war is and all-out attack on Christianity. So let me apologize once again: There is no war on religion in this country, but there is a war on Christians.

Stand strong, my brothers. Take up the whole armor of God and fight back. Never give in and never give up.


Joe Messina is host of The Real Side (TheRealSide.com), a nationally syndicated talk show that runs on AM-1220 KHTS radio and SCVTV [here]. He is also an elected member of the Hart School Board. His commentary normally publishes Mondays.

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  1. lisa says:

    Excellent story Joe. You are right, the war is on Christianity and it will continue until the church stands up and says, enough. We have been very compliant in America and God is not compliant. He is calling us to stand up and be the church we are supposed to be. The persecution will continue to get worse until we cry out to God and stand for Him!

  2. SCV Refugee says:

    Children have the freedom to pray in public schools — Christians as well as Muslims.

    The woman praying in the doorway to the school was probably scaring the kids, a daily reminder of school shootings. Not exactly an environment conducive to concentrating on their studies.

    This entire article is filled with “what ifs” that have never happened. What if a Christian came to his senses and realized that people have the right to be free from proselytizing? OMG.

  3. Greyling says:

    Oooh, Joe Messina has a bad case of CPS (Christian Persecution Complex). He clearly still hasn’t gotten over DOMA being ruled unconstitutional. And the lies he’s telling this week are legion.

    The commandment, thou shalt not lie, used to mean something. Unless the rightwing fringe has an axe to grind. Then anything goes.

    Messina is playing victim because he wants to make everyone else march lockstep with him, and he is using his “God” as a cudgel to discriminate against those he dislikes.

    You see, he’s a Dominionist, a Christian Reconstructionist, who wants to eliminate the Constitution and replace it with Leviticus.

    They believe that democracy is not compatible with Christianity, so they have to eliminate it and replace it with Christian theocracy.

    Messina uses the First Amendment to cover his lies. He just doesn’t want anyone else to use it for their constitutional rights.

  4. Cigar Dave says:

    Your revelation seems selective, insincere, and opportunistic. Simply change your fight to protect our Constitution, and you will protect all religions – not to mention America itself.
    In paragraph 4, you imply LGBT do not deserve Constitutional protection against discrimination, but then immediately invoke the same protections for Christians. This goes beyond hypocritical to irrational. Equal Protection means “equal” as in the same. If you want certain rights for one group, you must afford it to others… equally.
    You ask “what if” a gay bakery or gay photographer discriminated against a Christian cake order or wedding shoot. Would those businesses also get fined you wonder? The answer, obviously, is yes. But the question you need to ask yourself is “why all the discrimination appears to go from Christians toward gays, and not the other way.” That is the important question.
    Finally, you appear to have a grave misunderstanding of our Constitutional Separation of Church and State. Children are not barred from praying or wearing religious symbols in school. Outsiders are, however, forbidden from imposing religion or prayer on school children during school. It’s a very simple, and important concept. I am very surprised that someone who sits on our school board has such a profound misunderstanding of such a rudimentary, yet paramount, concept.

    David Barlavi, Esq.

  5. EugeneSavoy says:

    Modern liberals tear down what is good, elevate what is evil until they meet in the middle and there is no reason to fight. This is utopia in the mind of most modern liberals. Their childish psyches never grew out of the “don’t hit” playground stage. The result is that modern liberals make decisions that place wrong over right, evil over good, and outcomes that lead to failure over outcomes that lead to success every time.

    Thanks Joe. Stones and clubs aren’t far from the bigotry behind the legal attacks on Christian beliefs.

  6. Rachel says:

    Joe, the problem I find with your opinion articles is that you make statements as if they are facts, but do absolutely none of your homework. If you would simple Google the term “remove menorah” you will find many articles that state both nativity scenes AND menorahs get removed from public areas, in front of court houses, etc. Christian symbols are not the only targets by those out to have freedom of religion. If you Google “Jews having to remove their yarmulke”, and you’ll find more stories on that subject as well. It’s not just Christians. You say women have fought for the right to wear a hijab while working at a theme park, but you don’t mention if they won that fight or not. Wouldn’t that be crucial information to your claims? Then you compare that incident to students not being able to wear crosses around their neck. You can’t cry hypocrisy when you’re comparing completely separate practices of organizations! I urge you, before taking up the armor of God and fighting back that you actually do your homework, use logical reasoning, and realize that perhaps you are only hearing the war against Christianity because that’s the war you, and the news outlets you listen to, care about. Your opinion articles would carry so much more weight if they actually resembled a logical argument.

  7. tka2013 says:

    I’ve read several of your columns on the subject of religion over the last several months and to be fair I don’t find you bigoted. However your views strike me as one who recalls a time when Christian influence on American society was unquestioned and absolute, and as one unwilling to bend as other religious groups assert their right to be respected. However your assertion that there is a one sided war on Christians seems even weaker today after today’s liberal court decision against Jewish students at one of our most liberal colleges. Your piece was an assemblage of what-ifs, here’s just one example of a group of people whose heritage of being discriminated against is unmatched.


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