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Friday, June 18, 2004
Evidently at UC-Irvine there are some Islamic students who wish to wear green sashes at graduation to signify their religious beliefs. Some Jewish students are not too happy about this and have cried foul, expressing concern that the sashes might signify support for terrorist activity. Here is the official line by UC Irvine's Chancellor - the upshot is that the sashes can be worn, even if some are insulted.
Contrary to the Ninth Circuit Court, which is based in California and argued that "Under God" violated the first amendment, according to the Chancellor wearing sashes is protected by the first amendment:
"On University grounds open to the public generally, all persons may exercise the constitutionally protected rights of free expression, speech, and assembly."
Bill O'Reilly had UCI professor Mark Levine on his show tonight. Prof. Levine suggested that it was not the intention of the Islamic students to insult Jewish students. Although Hamas and other terrorist groups might also wear green sashes, the wearing of green sashes on the part of the students didnt' immediately imply their support. The professor continued to insist that it was the fault of the Jewish students for mis-interpreting the message being sent.
O'Reilly didn't really go after him on this point and I thought the professor got away with one. I have never liked the idea that hurt feelings become proof of intention. The defense to the "hurt feeling" claim is to prove a negative, which is impossible. The left has commonly invoked "hurt feelings" to justify policy prescribed by the legislature, the executive, or the courts. However, here we have a lack of consistency. The left argues that it is okay for some to wear green sashes that insult a clearly identified group (Jewish students) while at the same time arguing that the Confederate Battle flag cannot remain on public display. I know that there are millions who love that particular flag and don't intend to cause emotional harm. Yet, the left has insisted that a clearly identified group is likely to have hurt feelings from the flag, implicitly placing less value of the feelings of some. In the case of the Confederate battle flag, it simply had to go - thus my home state's flag was changed overnight by a tyrannical governor (who was unelected).
As Los Angeles county moves to strike a little cross from it's seal, California courts want to throw "Under God" out of the Pledge of Allegiance, and there seems to be a general disdain for religion in general in the Golden State, why is there no outrage over the overt display of religiosity on the part of the Islamists? Is it because it is Islam and not Judeo-Christian elements in question?
Isn't UC Irvine a public school? Was that a peep from the ACLU? No - just my chair squeaking...
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