The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) has warned Ohio’s Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) to exclude the Star of David from a planned Holocaust memorial at the Statehouse, retiring CSRAB member and former Republican state senator Richard Finan recently revealed.
“In the negative space between the two structures is a very large sacred religious symbol known as the ‘Star of David’ which dominates the structure, even from a long distance,” FFRF co-presidents Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor wrote in a June 14 letter to Finan.
“As the Star of David was deemed by European Jews to be the symbol that ‘would represent Judaism just as the cross did Christianity,’ its prominent inclusion in the memorial gives the impression of an endorsement of Judaism,” the evangelical atheist group warned.
FFRF noted that runners-up in the design competition for the memorial, which will be primarily funded by private donors, did not incorporate the Star of David.
“A reasonable observer could conclude that the government only cares about the Jewish victims of the Holocaust, not Christian, nonreligious, or other non-Jewish victims,” FFRF wrote.
The letter also warned CSRAB that the installation of the memorial, designed by world-famous architect Daniel Libeskind, “would create the legal precedent, for instance, to place an equally large or larger permanent Latin cross on Capitol grounds.”
Within paragraphs of expressing concern for the feelings of Christian victims of the Holocaust, the FFRF presidents pontificated about “the sinister role Christian union with the state played during the Holocaust.”
Barker and Gaylor pointed to “the concordance between the Roman Catholic and Lutheran denominations with Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy,” a reference to God on Nazi uniforms, and “the writings by Hitler, a Roman Catholic, who said in Mein Kampf ‘By fighting off the Jews, I am doing the Lord’s work.’”
FFRF continued in this vein, insisting “the Holocaust was a religiously-motivated genocide.”