NY Times: Lady Liberty trades in some trappings

As the congregation of the World Overcomers Outreach Ministries Church looked on and its pastor, Apostle Alton R. Williams, presided, a brown shroud much like a burqa was pulled away to reveal a giant statue of the Lady, but with the Ten Commandments under one arm and “Jehovah” inscribed on her crown.

And in place of a torch, she held aloft a large gold cross, as if to ward off the pawnshops, the car dealerships and the discount furniture outlets at the busy corner of Kirby Parkway and Winchester that is her home. A single tear graced her cheek.

It was not clear if she was crying because of her new home, her new identity as a symbol of religion or, as the pastor said, America’s increasing godlessness.

Andy in H-burg


  1. When do these folks get informed that “freedom *of* religion” includes “fredom *from* religion”?

  2. “Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me.
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

    That is SO 19th century. Like the Geneva Convention, it’s “quaint,” or like conservation, it’s a sign of “personal virtue” but not good policy.


  3. Have you noticed how there seems to be a major disconnect between the conservative religious groups and the progressives?

    They see the growing godlessness in the country, while we’re afraid the oppression by the religious majority is growing out of control.

    I’d like to think the middle ground would be acceptance of beliefs and non-beliefs would be good, but it looks like these folk won’t let us not believe in their god.

  4. Interesting point, TOI. As a citizen who believes in freedom, I completely accept those who believe (in whatever) and those who do not. I strongly believe that most people up and down the political spectrum feel that way.

    When you really get down to brass tacks, the picture in this thread- as breathtaking as it is initially- is merely free expression, which we all support. It was done on their property with their money (presumably).

    It goes without saying that we can be accepting of those of all faiths or no faith at all and be vigilant about religious oppression.

    The oppressors, who are in the minority, don’t see what they are advocating for as oppression, though. Or they don’t care.


  5. I guess my biggest problem is that, even though I *know* the radical Christians are in the minority, the majority just doesn’t seem to care enough to say anything about it.

    People I work with are pretty much of the opinion “it doesn’t bother me, so why should I care?”

    It won’t matter if the minority is small if the majority doesn’t do anything to stop them.

    And the best part? Not ONCE has it ever occurred to me that we should stop them from saying the things they are. They have their right to believe and say what they want, and I will always support that.

    But we have to draw the line at letting them pass laws based on those beliefs.

    At least there have been a couple of victories. The bill to outlaw any lawsuits against “under god” in the Pledge failed, as did the flag burning amendment.

    So there IS hope.

    We’ll just have to wait and see how the elections turn out. I’m afraid the Republicans are just TOO good at getting the god-fearing folk on their side, regardless of how much they’ve messed up the country.

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