- Obama shortens sentence of inmate from Cape (1/19/17)9
- Jackson police describe night of anger, car crashes, drug possession by 18-year-old (1/22/17)5
- Area hospitals hope a box helps prevent infant deaths (1/19/17)6
- A message from heaven (1/23/17)
- Local students to perform with choir at inauguration (1/19/17)3
- Southeast to lose $3.5 million from state in budget cuts (1/18/17)21
- Subjects of interest in 1992 killing take polygraph tests; results not revealed (1/18/17)2
- Meat-processing plant faces $70K penalty for Clean Water Act violations (1/17/17)4
- Area residents among those attending inauguration, women's march (1/22/17)92
- Comedian, cancer survivor Tom Green headlines sold-out Cancer Center benefit (1/22/17)
O'Connor would find analogy blasphemous
To the editor:
I was intrigued by Paul Greenberg's claim of Flannery O'Connor as his champion for banning flag burning. O'Connor would find his analogy between her belief in the "real presence" in the Eucharist and his belief in "presence" -- the presence of what he never makes clear -- in the American flag far more offensive than her companion's view that it was only a "symbol." She would have found Greenberg's abuse of her faith blasphemous.
The "real presence" of Christ in the Eucharist is a matter of religious faith. The claim that the Bible is more than a book is a matter of religious faith. Greenberg must use religious analogies for his claim that the flag is more than a symbol and that it has "presence," for this too is a matter of religious faith. His concept of "presence" lies behind all image-based religions.
Greenberg is entitled to worship his red, white and blue graven image, for our country guarantees freedom of religion. The flag serves well as the icon of the cult of civil religion. However, a law banning flag burning because of its religious "presence" would violate the Constitution, for it would establish a protected religion. As a Christian I can respect Greenberg's faith beliefs, but I cannot participate in the worship of his images. I can respect the flag as a symbol, but if it claims religious "presence," then I must say, in the words of Flannery O'Connor, "to hell with it."
KERRY H. WYNN
Cape Girardeau, Mo.