I just read Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's opinion regarding the constitutionality of religious displays on public ground during the holidays, including displays of Jesus (pdf document of opinion; Washington Post blogpost on the matter). The sad thing is this: displays of Jesus are allowed on public ground so long as such displays are "not making a religious statement."
Translation: As long as Jesus remains a knick-knack (and not, you know, the Son of God who destroys death, raises up the lowly, feeds the hungry, and inaugurates the Kingdom of God, among other things) He can be displayed on public ground in Virginia, according to the Attorney General.
Truth be told, I'm not picking on Cuccinelli. I just get really annoyed when Jesus is turned into a knick-knack, whether by politicians, marketers, or by fellow Christians who somehow think that a taxpayer-funded "Court House Jesus" is a good idea.
Question: Why would anyone who respects religion want to rob its symbols of meaning just so they could be set on a court house lawn?
After all, the Supreme Court has already ruled that the phrase "In God We Trust" is essentially devoid of religious content and thus perfectly suitable as a national motto. How sad it is that we are glad to render God language meaningless so that it can be fit for a coin.
Dear Government: Please keep your hands off of religious symbols. Religious communities and individuals can practice their religion just fine without your help. Thank you.
Church/State issues are a favorite of mine.