Loading
Judge rules against removal of anti-Catholic statue on university campus

.- A federal judge in Kansas has ruled that Washburn University did not violate the constitution by prominently displaying a sculpture that depicts a Catholic bishop with a grotesque facial expression, wearing a miter that resembles a phallus. The Thomas More Law Center brought the lawsuit on behalf of Thomas O’Connor, a Washburn professor of 39 years, and Andrew Strobl, a senior at Washburn, after the university refused to act on complaints by numerous Catholics, including the archbishop of the Archdiocese of Kansas City, and remove the sculpture, entitled “Holier than Thou.”  The lawsuit alleged that the sculpture conveyed hostility toward the Catholic faith in violation of the Establishment Clause

But university president Jerry Farley defended the display as fulfilling a purpose of art: “to engage us intellectually and emotionally.”

In his decision, the judge maintained that Washburn had a secular purpose for displaying this sculpture because “it functions to aesthetically enhance Washburn’s campus, broaden the educational experiences [and] increase the intellectual capacities of Washburn’s students.”

The judge concluded that the sculpture “would [not] cause a reasonable observer to believe that [Washburn] endorsed hostility towards the Catholic religion.”

Robert Muise, the Law Center attorney handling this case, called the decision “very disappointing” and said the centre intends to appeal the decision. “Catholics will not remain silent while their faith is being publicly ridiculed by a government institution,” he said.

This decision and other recent decisions by federal judges demonstrate that “there is a double standard when it comes to applying the Establishment Clause,” said Richard Thompson, president and chief counsel of the Law Center.

“The Ten Commandments and the Christian Nativity scene are out, but an anti-Catholic display of a bishop wearing a miter that resembles a phallus is permissible because it allegedly enhances aesthetics,” he said.

“Apparently, the religion clauses protect atheists but afford no comparable protection for Christians,” he noted. “This disturbing trend in our federal courts must be reversed.”


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Saint John Paul II on cartoon
Syrian Christian refugees
Papal Foundation Pilgrimage
Exorcism or prayer of liberation?
Jul
23

Liturgical Calendar

July 23, 2014

Wednesday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:1-9

Gospel
Date
07/23/14
07/20/14
07/19/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Jer 1:1, 4-10
Gospel:: Mt 13: 1-9

Saint of the Day

St. John Cassian »

Saint
Date
07/23/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:1-9

Homily
Date
07/23/14
07/21/14
07/20/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: