Atheists Force Football Team to Deface or Remove Christian Cross Memorials from Helmets

Atheists Force Football Team to Deface or Remove Christian Cross Memorials from Helmets

I’ve written time and time again, there are atheists, those folks who don’t believe and don’t really care if you do, and there are anti-theists, those folks who don’t believe and don’t want anyone else to either.

It’s the anti-theists who do things like this:

Football players at Arkansas State University were ordered to either remove a Christian cross decal from their helmets or modify it into a mathematical sign after a Jonesboro attorney complained that the image violated the U.S. Constitution.

“It is my opinion that the crosses must be removed from the helmets,” University counsel Lucinda McDaniel wrote to Mohajir. “While we could argue that the cross with the initials of the fallen student and trainer merely memorialize their passing, the symbol we have authorized to convey that message is a Christian cross.”

According to documents provided to me by Arkansas State, McDaniel gave the football team a choice – they could either remove the cross or modify the decal. And by modify – she meant deface.

“If the bottom of the cross can be cut off so that the symbol is a plus sign (+) there should be no problem,” she wrote. “It is the Christian symbol which has caused the legal objection.”

The team had been wearing the decals for two weeks without any complaints. That changed after last Saturday’s nationally televised game against the Tennessee Volunteers.

Jonesboro attorney Louis Nisenbaum sent McDaniel an email complaining about the cross decal.

“That is a clear violation of the Establishment Clause as a state endorsement of the Christian religion,” Nisenbaum wrote. “Please advise whether you agree and whether ASU will continue this practice.”

That’s right.

This attorney sees a decal on the back of a football helmet at a state university as the establishment of Christianity as the official state religion by the United States Congress.

And then those great folks at the Freedom From Religion Foundation chimed in:

“The crosses appeared to confer State’s endorsement of religion, specifically Christianity,” the FFRF wrote. “The inclusion of the Latin cross on the helmets also excludes the 19 percent of the American population that is non-religious.”

FFRF co-presidents Annie Lauire Gaylor and Dan Barker went so far as to suggest alternative ways for the football players to mourn.

“Many teams around the country honor former teammates by putting that player’s number on their helmets or jerseys, or by wearing a black armband,” they wrote. “Either of those options, or another symbolic gesture free from religion imagery, would be appropriate.”

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So, they had to remove the crosses, and athletic director Terry Mohajir was not amused:

“The fact is the cross was honoring two fallen teammates who just happened to be Christians,” he wrote on his Facebook page. “I just have a hard time understanding why we as Christians have to be tolerant of everybody else’s rights, but give up ours.

Amen, AD Mohajir.

Amen.

Duane Lester

Duane Lester is co-founder of All American Blogger, and the primary writer. Following graduation, Duane entered the United States Navy as a journalist. He spent five years touring the world, reporting on local news and sports. Following his enlistment, Duane spent almost 10 years working with adjudicated youth in residential treatment environments. Duane discovered politics after September 11. He credits Erich "Mancow" Muller for opening his eyes to his conservative beliefs. Since then, Duane has devoured books and literature on politics, reading everything he can from Adam Smith to Larry Elder to Thomas Sowell. He refers to his style of politics as "conserva-tarian", a mixture of conservative and libertarian beliefs.

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