This symbol of redemption hung in teeny-tiny glory over a rendering of the Hollywood Bowl. Only I believe that it had more to do with the actual cross visible from the Hollywood Bowl than anything religious. Anyway, three years ago the ACLU asked the supervisors to remove it. And they did, with the ever-predictable Mike Antonovich swearing that we’d all see this cross ” restored to the seal in our lifetimes.” They then took this opportunity to replace some of the daffy old symbols with some daffy new ones. Ejected forever is the goddess Pomona, probably because she represents a pagan deity pirated by the ancient Romans from the ancient Greeks and because parking at the County Fair is always abysmal. In her place is an American Indian woman in flowing Greek robe holding forth like a Halloween hostess with a basket of acorns. Or possibly bite-size Almond Joys. Oh, and she has a halo, maybe to indicate how she was likely dispatched to heaven by the holy Europeans. Meanwhile, the Hollywood Bowl’s spot is now occupied by Mission San Gabriel to symbolize the wholly non-Christian origins of a vast metropolis that began (and don’t even think Spanish Catholics had anything to do with this) El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula. Or The Town of Our Lady the Queen of Angels. And, no, it never was the City of Angels. The Bowl is still there, but moved to the upper right corner. Only now the offending cross, which was noticed only by the ACLU’s crack Harvard-educated Nitpicker Department, is gone and all is right with the county. But did anybody really think that such an issue would be overlooked by the kind of people who get bent out of shape about absolutely everything, including the not-so-terribly-old Pledge of Allegiance? Anyway, a county public works employee filed suit in 2004 contending that the supervisors’ decision was an act of hostility toward religion. Actually, it was something far better than that and far sillier. Or as an attorney with the County Counsel’s Office stated this week, “Governments are to be neutral when it comes to religion.” All the way down to microscopic crosses. There was, as usual when it comes to using religion like a hammer, more to this than meets the eye. The suit, you see, was fostered by the Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center, whose purpose was Well, I’ll let you decide what the purpose was. “I think this court, given the right case, would take it, and it would be the one that would change the landscape of separation between church and state,” said TMLC attorney Richard Muise. I don’t know about you, but I’m so happy to hear that there are people working silently and diligently to protect my right to worship in any way that I please as long as the way that I worship pleases them. And even better to know that there are those who, for reason all their own, would like to end once and for all this two-century-old idea that church and state should remain separated one from the other for the freedom of all and for the good of all. In this case the ACLU’s sublime and idiotic move got blown up into something hugely dangerous. Don’t you think that it’s finally time to let up on our poor overworked God and to worry less about the evils of a church and state separated and more about the separation of suffering humanity from food, clean water and a fair shot at a decent life? I want to hear your comments. Connect with me at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 310-543-6681 or send a letter to Daily Breeze/John Bogert, 5215 Torrance Blvd., Torrance, CA 90503-4077. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsBut first a little history of a terribly important issue that actually reached the Supreme Court this week, where it was promptly dismissed without comment. You might recall how the American Civil Liberties Union, with nothing better to do, asked the supervisors to remove the cross, which you probably never noticed in the little slot just beside the left elbow of Pomona. Actually, the Roman harvest goddess was surrounded left and right with six compartments holding six important civic symbols placed there by God. No, sorry. They were put there under the direction of the late, great Supervisor Kenneth Hahn who – after begetting a political son and daughter – is about as close to God as you can get in the 2nd District. Those instantly recognizable and meaningful icons include a triangle and caliper symbolizing the great engineering feats involved in water theft, a galleon probably belonging to Spanish explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, a fish to celebrate the fishing industry that has more or less vanished from San Pedro, a cow (see a lot of those, do you?), the oil derricks that are no longer on Signal Hill and the big enchilada itself – a symbol so potent that Christian activists felt compelled to run it all the way up to the highest (packed) court in the land. Half the world – that’s 3 billion people – live on less than $2 a day. This while a billion people can’t read or write, even though diverting 1 percent of the world’s armament spending could put every needy child on the planet into a decent school. I don’t mean to bring you down, but the United Nations has pages of this stuff and it’s all bad. So it is especially gratifying during Advent, the season during which Christians contemplate the birth of their savior, to know that there are still people out there working tirelessly to make ours a better world. I am, of course, talking about the highly controversial removal three years ago of the cross from the Los Angeles County seal and all that has happened since.
Next Post: Few expected for upcoming Election Day →