Fox News’ resident hysterical prevaricator Todd Starnes gives us the usual “why do you atheist groups only care about separation of church and state when it involves Christians, not Muslims” narrative. My buddy Andrew Seidel, chief counsel for the FFRF, provides the perfect answer:
But that is not the point Starnes wishes to make. Instead, he wants to accuse FFRF of targeting just Christianity. But FFRF does take issue with the government promoting or favoring any religion, including Islam. Starnes ignores the complaint we filed against the Muslim college professor promoting his religion in the classroom. FFRF sent out a press release on this, complete with audio clips and PowerPoint slides, to Starnes’ Fox News buddies, but nobody at the network reported on it. (So we can turn around and ask a similar question of Starnes: Why didn’t you cover FFRF’s complaint?)
We have also protested a Buddhist shrine on public land in California. We have sent letters to the mayors of Philadelphia and Dallas for hosting Iftar events to honor Ramadan and, just this week, to public libraries that plan on closing for the Dalai Lama. FFRF Co-President Dan Barker has debated several Muslims.
Even without these facts, however, the answer to Starnes’ disingenuous question is obvious. Groups seeking to uphold the Constitution “target” Christians because we “target” the violators and, as Christians are still the majority, most of theocrats violating the Constitution are Christian. It’s a fact, FFRF receives thousands of complaints about state/church violations annually, almost all concern government officials imposing Christianity on citizens. Currently, Muslims comprise about 1 percent of the U.S. population, so it’s hardly surprising FFRF receives very few bona fide complaints about the Muslim religion entangled with our government.
This is not just a question of numbers. Of course, the greater percentage of Christians in the population means there is a higher probability that any given offender is Christian. But in a democracy, where government is structured so that the majority often rules, it is usually the majority that will violate the rights of the minority. This is precisely why the Bill of Rights exists: to protect the minority from the tyranny of the majority.
Atheists, agnostics, freethinkers and minority religionists in this country have never had the unwarranted privilege Christians have asserted as members of the majority.In America, Christian persecution is not the problem; Christian privilege is.
Nails and heads, people. Nails and heads.