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PAPD launches ambitious racial 'action plan'

Original post made on Dec 15, 2008

Still reeling from accusations of racial profiling, the Palo Alto Police Department has prepared an ambitious "action plan" designed to educate officers, reassure the community and strengthen the relationship between police and area churches. It will be presented to the City Council tonight.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, December 15, 2008, 8:43 AM

Comments (36)

Posted by get out
a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:23 am

PAPD Officers,

Redwood City Police, San Mateo Police, and San Mateo County are hiring more than qualified and competent Law Enforcement Personnel like you guys. Leave now before Palo Alto goes downhill... The community and its leaders do not back you guys. Go somewhere were you are appreciated for your hard work and efforts.

Posted by Sharon
a resident of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:42 am

If you think we have a homeless problem now, just wait until the churches get control of the PAPD.

Are there no men with hair on thier chests on our city council? All of this touchy feely stuff will just make us a target for more criminals and homeless, becasue word will get out on the street that we are an easy mark.

Posted by Hopeful
a resident of College Terrace
on Dec 15, 2008 at 12:13 pm

While education and reach-out to the community, particulary the faith community, is good, too many cooks will spoil the broth. Palo Alto already has too many cooks. That's why the Chief's reasonable remarks were blown out of proportion. The result was disastrous.

Jay Boyardsky, the former district attorney responsible for overseeing the PAPD indicated in his remarks to council that he saw nothing wrong with the work done by the PAPD. It was COUNCIL that fanned the flames after the mention of race, I suppose from fear of looking not politically correct. Council & the city managers office left the chief and the PAPD out to dry.

If this effort is handled in the usual "Palo Alto Process" way, the two previous comments on this blog will prove prophetic. Our police officers ought to go to communities that appreciate them NOW, & Palo Altans will need to be careful, because with too much public control, the tail will be wagging the PAPD dog as officers will be muzzled, bound & gagged. God help us. I am cautiously optimistic.

Posted by G. Uttenberg
a resident of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 12:54 pm

Wasn't this part of the plot in Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol? Sounds appropriate enough. Everything is fine as long as it doesn't increase traffic or affect property value in Palo Alto.

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 15, 2008 at 1:13 pm

I think I am seriously going to throw up. I am so disgusted, even though this was great Vegas odds predictable. Palo Alto is going to hell in a hand basket. Did you people SEE who these PC idiots went to for 'guidance'? Some of the same talking heads who are 'involved' in EPA. How's THAT working for them?

And while I wish Asst. Police Chief Burns good luck in his quest, City Manager Keene has 'allegedly' had a history of going outside the department to hire for the top police position. What do you want to bet he hires a Chief not based on actual law enforcement qualifications but solely based on their ethnicity and political prowess. PC Pandering. Something at which this City is excelling.

I'm with the others. All good police officers, GET OUT! I saw a piece on the news the other night that many Cities are having difficulties hiring good, qualified officers. If you stay here you will be answering to, and under the microscope of the NAACP, African American Stanford Students (not stated but who showed up at the City Council whining in the first place), community Churches and Youth groups. Yeah,all those people well trained in law enforcement crime solving techniques (NOT) people are who I want my police department answering to.

What a ridiculous joke. Notice no mention of anyone ELSE having input. The obvious usual suspects, like Moose will scream people like me are racist because of these comments, but this article with these stupid, STUPID findings and planned courses of action are showing us clearly who the real racists are. Treat ethnicity with kid gloves, totally ignore the rights and input of those who are not considered 'ethnic'. Ironically, those are the very people asking that we all be treated equal; not asking for special consideration by anyone.

Say tata to your property values people. Paly is no longer a Gold medaled distinguished school, slipped into Silver. Gunn slipped a bit in its rank. Crime is increasing, the demagogues that run this City will not allow the cops to do their jobs, so it will get worse. The good cops who know how to keep balance in their jobs WILL leave. It's probably happening already. Look at the exodus in EPA. This is what happens when talking heads and Little Tin Gods run our Cities.

Now the City of Palo Alto will be run by the NAACP, the Human Rights Commission, Churches and kids! Yahooooo! Palo Alto is starting it's long slide downhill! It is becoming as laughable as Berkeley. Oh wait, do I see a direct connection? Hmmm. Soon our kids will be able to walk down University Ave and see counter culture street vendors selling graphic and vulgar tee shirts and bumper stickers proclaiming 'F' (spelled out) just about ANYTHING that is good and decent. God, I wish I could get the hell out of here.

Posted by anon
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Dec 15, 2008 at 1:27 pm

Arem James will be hired as the new police chief!!! Mayor Foster will be his assistant chief and ciampi will be the captain!!

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 15, 2008 at 1:54 pm

That's how I see it anon. Did you see where the article stated Chief Johsons comments enraged area residents? It enraged SOME area residents. The rest of us were more disappointed in her choice of words and disgusted with the media spin that was placed upon them; in part by our very own Ship of Fools, the City Council with Captian Klein at the helm. I would love to know what international news agencies actually covered this event. I looked around and beyond small stories that get sucked up from places like Topix into the giant media outlets as fill there wasn't much. Oh yeah, I did see things on some counter culture and the 'woe is me the police are evil' weblogs.

Posted by By the rules or not at all
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Dec 15, 2008 at 1:56 pm

They're taking steps to make sure that the PAPD obeys the law while enforcing the law. It makes all of us safer by limiting the extent to which PAPD resources are wasted by persecuting the innocent. It also increases trust in the PAPD, making it easier to secure convictions in court.

In other communities, ending police harassment of nonwhites who are behaving legally has raised property values, simply because it has the broadened the pool of potential buyers.

The fear I see in some of the posts here comes across as utterly irrational. Relax folks.

a resident of South of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 2:38 pm

Yeah. That's what they're doing. Nonwhites, nonwhites, nonwhites. WHITES are treated unfairly at times too by law enforcement. Where is their march? Where is their consulting group? Oh yeah, I remember, Noun Eats Mouse calls THAT the KKK.

I see NOTHING in that article that deals with our community as a whole. The Council only seeks to appease and cater to a select population. Very few 'innocent' are 'persecuted'. So much for advancment in race relations. Isn't the ultimate goal that we all be treated as equals? Don't see that happening here. When do I get to be special?

I don't see 'fear' in these posts. I see disgust.

Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 15, 2008 at 2:53 pm

I hope that the Palo Alto PD is not at the same level of stress as the San Jose PD. SJ seem to be at a tipping point.

Web Link

btw, anyone know why the Palo Alto ARCO held up at gunpoint on Saturday night has not been in the papers?


Posted by Ken
a resident of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 2:53 pm

"They're taking steps to make sure that the PAPD obeys the law while enforcing the law."

By the rules,

Are you saying that PAPD broke the law? If so, how? Be specific. If not, what steps need to be taken? Why would we need the churches to oversee our PAPD? I thought there was supposed to be a wall between churches and state, at least in terms of day-to-day governance.

Palo Alto property values could, conceivably, be driven down by an overreaching civilian constraint on PAPD. This is not an unfounded fear. Our Downtown is a real mess with all the bums there, and the churches have a heavy hand of responsibility for that.

Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2008 at 2:55 pm

Churches? I presume every Church, Temple, Synagogue, Mosque, etc. in Palo Alto, or are we being segregational again?

Seriously, isn't it a little of preaching to the converted when one enlists the help of Churches?

Posted by Rev. Dr. Randall K. Wilburn
a resident of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 3:56 pm

I lived and served as a pastor in Palo Alto for 14 years. I was very involved with all members of the community,especially East Palo Alto.
I knew the police chief of Palo Alto to be a person of great integrity. I am saddened by all that has happend for her and for Palo Alto. Fear is so divisive. Having lived in four regions of the country I can tell you her comments would not cause the firestorm created in Palo Alto.
I have been an advocate for marginalized, oppressed, excluded persons for most of my 40 years of ministry. To raise a question about racial profiling is not a "politically correct" stance. However, when a victim tells the police that an African American attacked them, it only makes sense to release that information to the public as an aid to investigation. To indiscriminately stop a person on the street or in their car just because they are of a certain ethnic group is not appropriate. However, if a crime has been committed and the person may fit the description, what is the officer to do?
I believe the loss of your police chief is a great loss. She deserves a break. I understand why she is going to retire. I hope the next chief is able to walk the thin blue line of fear and consitutional rights. Peace.

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 15, 2008 at 4:08 pm

As Dr. Wilburn alluded, in law enforcement there is a need for soft profiling when the predominant victim descriptors add up to a particular person of a particular race. Racial profiling is inclusive of whites too people. Read up on the case of Seattles Green River serial killing. Count how many white men were 'consensually' stopped and questioned over 30 years. White. Men. Profiled. Where is the horror? When is the march? It happens to every race, but I guess whites just don't count for much. Probably because they don't scream about it and make unreasonable demands for special treatment.

Posted by Anon Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 15, 2008 at 4:43 pm

Oh the sky is falling, the sky is falling!

Quick PAPD officers-- run away from PC Palo Alto like crazed lemmings.

Assuming that the Police Chief's comments were just an unfortunate guffaw, and assuming that in the last few years there has not really been any (hard and illegal)racial profiling...

Due to the big uproar and the impending audit (oh boo hoo a "waste" of $20K) it is incumbent on the City to AT LEAST go through some motions that they are addressing the possibility that there is, or could be, an actual problem.

Over the years Palo Alto has had a big history of racial profiling. Even if it stopped under Chief Johnson that legacy combined with her comments dumped a bit of a match on it all.

I am sure that if Redwood City, San Mateo, etc. had a police chief who publicly stated the same words, the same international press, march, etc., had all happened...that those cities would be doing the same thing.

All this sounds like is that an assumption is being made that most incidents in which people believe they were the targets of racial profiling eventually get told in schools and/or churches. And so a communication conduit is being established. A few more meetings, more OT or such. Maybe a total waste, maybe some good will actually come of it.

Get a grip.

a resident of South of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 5:20 pm

1. It is. Falling. Fast. 2. Assumption is the mother of all ________. 3. TwentyK could be put toward more sports programs under the City for the kids. Or put it toward counseling for troubled kids. It is not the job of the cops to be both law enforcers and troubled youth counselors, as mentioned above. Palo Alto PD isn't an episode of CHPs, where they find a troubled miscreant and have him over to a barbeque at their homes at the end of each case. 4. Palo Alto has not had a 'big' history, they had 'some' history. Most departments across the Country have. Never any definitive results upon subsequent enquiry. 5. RWC and San Mateo would not have wasted their money, their police Chief would not have been thrown under the PC Bus and troublemakers like Aram James singing the same old tired song are more often than not disregarded, as they should be. It is always good to have the citizenry watch and question, it is entirely another to become a fanatical naysayer and perpetual problem. Undermines any good work that is being done out there. Causes a real us vs. them mentality.

Posted by Ned
a resident of Downtown North
on Dec 15, 2008 at 5:42 pm

Will I need to put the church's phone numbers in my speed dial when I need a police officer to respond to my house?? I sure hope the police officers stay out of the churches and in the streets protecting us and our property.

Gee, if I was a crook (I am currently not) I would DEFINITELY target Palo Alto. Seems like the police officers are going to be tied up performing time-wasting meetings.

PAPD is NOT racially profiling. If you believe PAPD is racially profiling, WHERE are the charges?? INNOCENT until proven guilty!! Either prove it or go home!

Posted by Outside Observer
a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 7:30 pm

An idea for those on both sides of the PAPD racial profiling and/or other PAPD issues past, present and continuing.

How about a fresh start?

And one that will save the taxpayers the $81 million for the new "public safety" building.

Why not do what the smaller communities do. Contract for Police Services with the Santa Clara County Sheriff.

What do you think?

Posted by anon
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Dec 15, 2008 at 8:19 pm

LOL...hahahaha...are you serious? bring the sheriff's office over??? That is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Comparing PAPD to she Sheriff's office is like comparing papd to epa

a resident of South of Midtown
on Dec 15, 2008 at 9:44 pm

San Mateo County Sheriff. Different county. EPA isn't just a different City, it's in a different COUNTY.

Posted by Forreal?
a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:09 pm

This is comical. A vocal minority complained they felt harrassed after the Chief mispoke, and that is somehow proof that there is racical profiling? I guess the police shoudl just arrest someone when they "feel" they committed a crime. I guess feelings equal proof.

Posted by Nekisi
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:30 pm

Political correctness gone mad. What are we now, the UK?

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 16, 2008 at 12:36 am

Is it true that Arco was robbed over the weekend? What are the details? Why wasn't that in the paper? Seriously? How do you call this 'news, when you don't report the crimes around Palo Alto?

Posted by WHAT?
a resident of Fairmeadow School
on Dec 16, 2008 at 12:39 am

I keep hearing about the long "history of racial profiling in Palo Alto." What history? I have lived in town for 23 years, and not once has there been an uproar about police racial profiling. Seems like this whole issue has become a big kangaroo court, completely detached from any kind of reality.

A plea to the fine policemen in Palo Alto - please don't leave. We repect you, trust you, and support you 100%. I know my neighbors and friends in town feel the same way. Keep doing great work and keeping our streets safe from the same fools causing this whole outcry!

Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 16, 2008 at 3:31 am

"Keep doing great work and keeping our streets safe from the same fools causing this whole outcry!"


Do you really think that actual criminals are the ones who marched over this issue?

I remember when the march was first announced many on this forum were hysterically acting as if a riot was being planned. Asserting that the marchers and the criminals were one and the same.

With friends like you the police don't need enemies. All you do is enable whatever nefarious or unsavory elements MIGHT be among the police.

I don't doubt that among the hue and cry a certain amount of "Al Sharpton-ism" was probably involved. But where there is smoke there is fire---and even if PA is low on the national scale as regards racial profiling the history is there. Not all of it is ancient by any stretch.

But look at the whole hysterical tone----police should vote with their feet and leave, absurd claims that any other Bay Area town could just light a cigar and flick ashes on an identical mix of guffaws and outcry.

Yes let's hope that ARCO was torched by van loads of gang members from EPA! Maybe even that adjacent houses were robbed. For SHAME on ye liberal Palo Alto, even the liberal media is part of the consipiracy.

Your agenda of using whatever crimes may (or may not) occur to whip up hysteria is very clear.

Posted by Females Too!
a resident of Mountain View
on Dec 16, 2008 at 9:17 am

While I appreciate your support of the PAPD officers (and agree 100%), please keep in mind that they are not just policeMEN, but policeWOMEN, too! I was loving your coments until that point, and then assumed you must be quite ignorant. Who says policeman anymore? It's police OFFICER! Look at all the accusations that ever ocurr in police departments across this country, from corruption to inappropriate use of force to racial profiling. You will almost never see a female invovled. Coincidence? I think not. Is it because far fewer women are in law enforcement? Nope.

Perhaps what we need is more FEMALES in law enforcement. Granted - Chief Johnson, a female, is who started this whole mess. But I think we are all in agreement that she simply misspoke.

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 16, 2008 at 1:00 pm

Wow, way harsh commentary. 'Policemen' is just an old fashioned cover all term, similar to 'Kleenex' for tissue and 'Coke' for soda. I don't think 'What' meant anything sexist in their comment. Certainly not specifying sex doesn't make 'What' ignorant! How about merely non specific? And yes, I am a female. Didn't bother me one bit, I got the gist.

[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.] As to the March; History, for which you have shown such a fondness, has shown that troublemakers have attached themselves to planned (benign) events such as that March, and turned good (subjective) intent into disaster. A lot of people think that thugs don't read forums such as this. Some do, some don't. Thugs CAN read yanno. Quit profiling. Other people do. People talk. Word gets around.

Beside the point that I still believe the March was nothing but a PC Pandering event for attention hungry politico's riding on the race wake of Obamas election (Foster) and for others to take out a political thorn (Klein and the City Council gunning for Johnson ), I think you are missing the bottom line.

The March had the potential to get out of hand. The hue and cry on these boards was not based on something fabricated in the minds of histrionics. It was based on knowledge of past events. The Palo Alto Police Dept.has a reputation for keeping things tight and in hand when these demonstrations occur. Add to that what bloggers and general word of mouth around town were saying, word got out. EVERYONE would be on hyper alert and be on the lookout for the slightest sign of trouble. Why do you think the turnout for the March was so small? The 'fun' factor was taken away. Word got out, the police did their usual good job of keeping a lid on it. Nothing bad happened! In the end, little bluebirds fluttered about, deer ventured out of the woods, Cinderella was freed and royally dressed by mice and everyone sang folk songs and united in a greater understanding of one another. Yeah, 'til next time.

Posted by YouShouldKnow
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 17, 2008 at 2:25 am

Again, why allow Moose to compare American Christians in an unflattering light to Al Quada, but you erase the portion of my comment directly quoting and relating to his most current...uhhh, graphic flight of fantasy? I saw you removed that portion of his comment above as well, but have still allowed that other objectionable comment to stand. I am agnostic but find that comment to be more insultimg than some fool on here typing vulgarities.

Posted by fireman
a resident of another community
on Dec 17, 2008 at 8:30 am

More money for PA, BS.....

Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 10:20 am

I just want to express that I find it hysterically funny that anyone would suggest that the march was made smaller and non-violent by the absurd and racist paranoia expressed here on this forum. Or that the hyper-vigilance of the police scared otherwise criminals and violent sorts from coming out and doing whatever nefarious deeds..

I see the news here online. If it in any way involves crime I almost can predict the spin a bunch of people jump in with...

Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 10:25 am

As regards my "objectionable" comparison of right wing Christians to Al Queda....

That is entirely a valid political comparison. And an entirely valid religious comparison.

I see no difference between people advocating a Muslim Theocracy and those advocating a Christian Theorcracy.

And Al Queda and the Neocons feed off each other. The Neocons using the religious right as their foot soldiers. Bush was the link---a man from old East Coast money now "Texan-ized" and a religious zealout himself.

One may disagree with my perspective. But I fail to see why anyone, especially one who describes themselves as "agnostic" would equate my comparison as vulgarity (or worse).

Posted by Fed Up
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 1:37 pm

A Noun Ea Mus, There are NO Christian Theocracies in any country anywhere in the world. There never will be any.
This is because Christian teaching prohibits things like conversion by the sword. Radical Islam, on the other hand, promotes such practices. Christian teaching requires that conversion be freely chosen and NOT forced.
The Christian founders of our country built into our Constitution the prohibition of the formation of a state religion (or theocracy), Christian or otherwise. The "separation of church and state", prevents the government from establishing any religion or theocracy, while at the same time allowing the freedom of religious practice by the citizens without government interference.
However, the goal of radical Islam is always the establishment of an Islamic theocracy. And once the Islamic theocracy is in place it is brutally enforced. Radical Islam does not believe in religious freedom. Non-Islamic groups are routinely deprived of their basic rights, enslaved, abused/tortured and even killed - with the blessings of the Islamic state.
In fact radical Islam is brutal in its enforcement of its religious laws on Muslims themselves. Unlike radical Islam, NO Christian sect (no matter how "right wing"), advocates cutting off a hand for theft, the stoning of rape victims or the death penalty for homosexuals or adulterers.
In a word, there is NO valid comparison between "right wing" Christian groups and radical Islamic groups like Al Qaeda. All you have done is demonstrate your colossal ignorance and the typical left wing hysteria and paranoia about Christianity.

Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 2:19 pm

My ignorance?

The entire plunder and and subjugation of Latin America by the Church (or do you not consider Catholics to be Christians...ah hem, "true" Christians"?)

The Church of England?

Current attempts to basically overrule the separation between Church and State----putting prayer BACK in school, banning abortion based on religion, etc.

One of Bush's generals stated publicly, and echo'd by Ann Coultier, that we should "Christianize" the Arab world.

If the last few years should have taught anyone anything it is that our constitutional amendments mean little to nothing when it comes to the religious right/Neocon agenda. Torture is Bill O Faire, protest not allowed except in "Free Speech Zones"!, and so on.

The Christian right in this country seems quite willing to use whatever means necesary, including the use of state power, to shove it's agenda and ideas down all our throats.

And Islam has existed as the principal religion in many countries where it is not (or was not) a theorcracy. Turkey (under Attaturk anyway), Egypt, Algeria, etc.

Radical Islam and Radical Christianity are pretty similar.

Al Queda's agents hijacked airplanes and killed over 3,000 people in NY City on 9/11. They also have killed many other people in Europe and Africa. Bush and his Neocon/Christian gang purposely spun a lie in order to launch a war on Iraq based on a lie. Body count is now 4,000 Americans, hundreds of thousands or Iraqi's and still counting. Al Queda handed Bush & Co. a pretext they were needing to launch their agenda. Bush & Co. returned the favor by engaging in a strategy which has guaranteed recruitment for Al Queda for years to come. They feed off each other in a twisted symbiosis.

But why the unbridled umbrage over my stating this? I mean we can agree to disagree.

Posted by Fed Up
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 5:56 pm

This discussion is veering off the topic of racial profiling. However, A Noun Ea Mus, I will address the points you tried to make.
The Catholic Church (the first and only Christian Church at the time) did not ransack and subjugate Latin America. The conquistadores did that for the Spanish throne. This was about money and power.(The very idea that Spain shelled out a huge chunk of change to fund a missionary effort is ridiculous.) And just because they used the name of the Church dosen't mean that the Church condoned the crimes that were committed. No, those crimes violated Church law and teachings.
As for the Church of England, King Henry VIII violated Catholic Church law when he established the Church of England and appointed himself as its head. He usurped the authority of the Pope and began the oppression of English subjects who were still Catholics or members of other Christian groups.
Separation of Church and State was NEVER meant to expunge religion from the public venue. It was meant to protect all faiths from persecution from the government. If you think otherwise, just note that prayer has historically preceded all meetings of the House and Senate. (You may be allergic to public prayer but the founders of our country clearly were not.)
Last time I checked, Bush's generals and Anne Coulter still have the right to free speech. Who cares if you don't like what they said? (I guess it will be another victory for the tolerant left when certain people's free speech is eliminated.)
The Christian hating left has demonstrated that it will use whatever means necessary, including propagandizing our children in public schools, using the mainstream media as a mouthpiece, overturning the vote of the people through the politically corrupted courts and the use of state power, to shove its agenda and ideas down all our throats.
The term Neocon is a prejudicial label used to describe a certain type of Jewish republican. I consider it to be hate speech.
Radical Islam is not the same as ordinary Islam. If radical Islam gets the upper hand in Turkey, Egypt and so forth, you can expect those countries to become Islamic theocracies.
You have failed to prove that radical Islam is anything like any form of Christianity.
You have failed to substantiate your accusation that the war on Iraq was based on a lie. (The most anyone can claim is that the intelligence agencies blew it.) The "Bush lied" thing is just a mantra that the left repeats and repeats until they think they have reached the "truth". It's all very pathetic - all very boring.
The only "twisted symbiosis" I see here is between a liberal and his self delusions.

Posted by A Noun Ea Mus
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 6:25 pm

Very revealing.

"Neocon" is hate speech? NEOCON NEOCON NEOCON.

I am really getting a laugh out of all this nonsense.

The Church didn't do it, it had the Conquistadors do it for them!

So if I said Hitler exterminated the Jews you would say "No, Hitler didn't do it, it was the SS".?

So if Henry VII violated Catholic Law when he established the Church of England....what early Christian Law did Emperor Constantine break when he established (his) Christianity as the official religion of Rome? Or what law did then Justinian violate, and so on....?

The founders of this country were also not allergic to slavery. So, if that is the yardstick, then forcing public school prayer down kid's throats is also OK?

I really don't care which version of "Grownups Need an Imaginary Friend" you think is superior to any other. Personally I think they all are absurd. But can anyone to take a step back, look at the history of both the Christian and Muslim religions, and claim one holds any moral high ground?

Onward Christian Soldiers
Duty's way is plain
Slay your Christian neighbors
Or by them by slain

Pulpiteer's are spouting
Effervescent swill
God above is calling you
To rob and rape and kill

Posted by Fed Up
a resident of Professorville
on Dec 17, 2008 at 11:49 pm

You really should study your history more - maybe then you wouldn't be so confused. Perhaps your school pushed a lot of P.C., liberal drivel instead of any inconvenient historical facts.
Hitler gave the order to exterminate the Jews (and many others, totaling 12 million). So yes, he is responsible along with those who carried out his orders. The king of Spain (not the Church) ordered the plunder of Latin America and is responsible along with those who acted on his commands or out of their own greed and disregard for life.
Many of the founders of this country were opposed to slavery. But they knew that they could not fight amongst themselves about the issue at that time because it would cost them the war with England and the country they were trying to establish. They left the Constitution open to amendment at a later time to deal with it. That time came with the Civil War and even then, it almost destroyed this country.
I have to marvel at someone such as you, whose biggest, darkest fear seems to be that someone, somewhere might utter a prayer in a public place like a school. Seriously, get a life. There are much worse dangers in this world to worry about.
Yes, why don't we take a step back and look at the histories of the Christian Churches as compared to that of radical Islam. Radical Islam is still stuck in the barbaric Dark Ages. The Christian churches are not.
By the way, Stalin and his Godless state butchered more innocent people than any relgious state in history. Go figure.

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