While the nation's attention has been riveted to the government shutdown and fight over Obamacare for the last couple of weeks, other things are happening across the USA that should anger Americans even more than the smarmy goings on of Washington politics. One of those things was an outrageous incident that happened in Sterling, CO about two weeks ago.
The grieving family of Linda Baker, wife of Baptist pastor Mark Baker, were denied their request to have the ichthys--an early fish symbol of Christianity--with "Jesus" written inside it, placed on Mrs. Baker's headstone. Shawn Rewoldt, manager of the public cemetery where Mrs. Baker was buried, refused the family's request on the grounds that the name "Jesus" might offend someone. Stunned, the family protested only to have Rewoldt compare the Jesus-in-the-ichthys symbol to the hooked cross of Nazi Germany. "What if somebody wanted to put a swastika [on a headstone]?" Rewoldt reportedly told the Bakers to defend his decision. Next, the family appealed to the city council for help but the council supported Rewoldt. Only after being pressured by a Facebook campaign launched by the Bakers did Sterling city manager Joe Kiolbasa overrule Rewoldt. Linda Baker will get to have the symbol she wanted put on her headstone after all, but her wish should never have been denied in the first place.
Yes, I know the cemetery in question was a public, city-owned cemetery, but the manager didn't use the separation of church and state ruse to block the Baker family's religious freedom. Oh no. He tried to stop Jesus's name from being seen on the grounds that its "Christian connotation" might offend. If the Bakers had asked for the name "Allah" or "Mohammed" for their loved one's headstone you can bet your proverbial bottom dollar that neither of them would've been deemed potentially offensive.
This entire incident was despicable and outrageous! Yet, as outrageous as it was I would've expected it in the big liberal cities on the east and left coasts. Shockingly, this attack on Christianity occurred in the heartland in a town with less than 20,000 people. The poison of political correctness and Christophobia is seeping into and corroding every nook and cranny of America. All the budget and policy battles in Washington will be for nothing if we don't stop the march of the Left's cultural rot through America. To paraphrase Jesus, what does it profit a nation to gain fiscal order yet lose its soul?
Try banning that, Sterling, Colorado.