Someone just posted the following query on the Hudson Community Board on Facebook.
Curious (and not being on Warren Street myself to see the parade), I checked the mass gathering permits posted on the City website to find out what the parade was about and discovered today was the day for the Endless Love Temple's "Religious Parade and Gathering," which started at 3 p.m. with a parade down Warren Street and will continue until 7 p.m. in Henry Hudson Riverfront Park. The Endless Love Temple is, of course, the church whose pastor is Ed Cross, Second Ward supervisor.
On the topic of the replica ship/parade float, the last sheet of the application for the mass gathering permit contains this handwritten message:
It seems that for today at least the object is not a replica, constructed in 1985 for Hudson's Bicentennial Celebration, of The Hudson, the first ship ever built here at the end of the 18th century, but a replica of Noah's ark. The question of whether or not it is appropriate for City-owned property to be used in this manner remains unanswered.
COPYRIGHT 2017 CAROLE OSTERINK
it's not appropriate. It was chilling to hear the extra loud testifying to Jesus coming through my backyard and during an afternoon walk - could beReplyDelete
heard at least as far as 2nd and Allen.
I sincerely hope that my taxes didn't go to pay for extra police to guard a religious group. Chilling - I repeat.
The request for police escort (or, at least, presence) is normal for any public gathering of sufficient size, religious or no. Their presence is more logistically practical than anything, if it makes you feel less chilled. The use of such a visible piece of city property is a bit more questionable.Delete
The subject matter doesn't interest me in the least, but I'd feel chilled if our taxes weren't used for the purpose of protecting "the right of the people peaceably to assemble" (1st Amendment).ReplyDelete
Okay, it would be a proper gesture for the religious people to pay for the City's gasoline ($5?); otherwise I'd hope to receive the same sort of protection for my own beliefs and/or disbeliefs. Till we entered this Brave New World, that's what was normal for Americans.
Now that religion has become politicized maybe categories should be reconsidered. How about a Satanism Parade ? Will that be as welcomed as say a Muslim or Christian Parade?ReplyDelete
Wonder if the police would escort a parade for an "Endless Skepticism" parade recognizing the agnostic/atheist communities.ReplyDelete
Of course the HPD would do that! You don't have to wonder, or is it more important to inject cynicism everywhere than to go learn the answer for yourself? (It's a phone call, for goodness sake.)Delete
So its not ok for this group to use the float and have a city truck pull it but it is ok for everyone else to use it? With this attitude I guess you will complain that the city shouldnt put in overtime for Winter Walk or the many other parades in town? Oh wait! Thats right it doesnt benefit you. I see no issue with them using the float and it being pulled by the City.ReplyDelete
And yet on this topic we agree, Herb ...Delete
I'll even take it up a notch. The reach of "diversity" these days is appalling. It looks more like self-regard and intolerance. In a word, it's hypocrisy.
Was yesterday's event in the park at all "religious"? You'd need a Bengali-English translator to say for sure, but that's not the point. The point is that both groups got their permits, and either group can express whatever religious views they like (or not), and can even ask for and expect to receive police protection.
The US Constitution was ratified 230 years ago yesterday, and it couldn't be in worse hands.
Goodness! I thought Hudson was know (at least unofficially) as "The Friendly City". That's what I used to read, proudly displayed on the bumper of the City's iconic (now defunct) "trolley". What has happened here?ReplyDelete
I'm a hard liner on church / state separation; it should be absolute. We've got centries of history that illustrate the extent to which Christians will go shove their beliefs up the ass of everyone else. Let's not give them a taxpayer-sponsored pickup truck to make their task easier.ReplyDelete
It might be said that a student of mythology has all of the horses in every race, and also none. From that perspective, the problem becomes how to keep a society from falling apart, particularly at a time when so many are intent on that very outcome.Delete
As an ideal, government neutrality towards the virtues of its citizens can end up hastening a society's dissolution. In "Politics," Aristotle warns that a mere alliance or covenant between people of like interests does not constitute a "city." Such arrangements tend to fail in the end.
"Nor does the city aim at an alliance, to prevent anyone from doing injustice to anyone; or at exchange and dealings between its members. ... Hence it is evident that whatever is correctly called a city, not just for the sake of argument, must be concerned with virtue. For otherwise the community turns out to be merely an alliance, differing only in the proximity of its members from the other alliances with more distant members. ... Evidently, then, a city is not a community for living in the same place, for preventing the unjust treatment of one member by another, and for exchange. All these are necessary conditions for a city, but their presence does not make a city" (Book 3, Chapter 9).
My guess is that your own strict church/state separation looks beyond mere neutrality for the sake of equable alliances, and aims for some general good. Whether our ideas of the general good assume as prerequisites such qualities as fair procedures, tolerance, or a respect for individual civil rights, as are often associated with ideas of strict government neutrality (Christian-derived values all, interestingly enough), our experiment in self-government requires that we acknowledge qualities, or virtues, through which we may perpetuate the experiment.
Like the Christian values which many seem to despise, secular ideas of toleration, diversity, fairness, and freedom are values too. They can't be defended by the relativistic claim that no values can be defended, so who's to justify the elevating one set of values or virtues over another? The Constitution says only that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."
Philosophically, it begins to look like parties of mere alliances are now shoving their own "beliefs up the ass of everyone else," and for the perceived slight of other groups having done the same to them at some time.
To lots Americans with no religion orientation, but who nevertheless embody a traditional value system, the latter is not a productive scenario. In that case, how can we break the vicious downward cycle which has as its aim a chimeric "neutrality"? As implied by Aristotle, "a city" can't survive if it fails to promote the civic virtues of its citizens.
So if societies can aim for moral excellence in order to attain values such as tolerance, fairness, and freedom, then SHORT OF overtly endorsing this or that value system, isn't it better for the Aristotelian "city" to loan its DPW truck to any religious group which expresses a general spirit of inclusive unity? If the Bangladeshi community wants to use the waterfront park and borrow a DPW truck, I say let them. Why is it better to deny every community's virtuous contribution to the life of our city so that one community can be punished which some find distasteful merely. How does that enrich Hudson?
I think it's better for any society to acknowledge and then foster a diversity of formative values which will be needed in the end to perpetuate that society.
To look at Hudson's boat float and see Noah's Ark? I think this is simple and wonderful. I also recall that the myth of the Flood is not Christian, nor is it confined to the Old Testament or any single religion or culture. Maybe next year they can have the whale float to enact the story of Jonah.ReplyDelete