10/12/2009--Last Thursday, Steve Waldman, the well-known author and Editor-in-Chief of the popular religion blog Beliefnet, posted a blog entry on an exchange between Justice Scalia and Peter J. Eliasberg, the attorney for the ACLUin the oral argument in Buono v. Salazar (Secularizing the Cross) Buono is the case about the cross that was declared a national monument honoring the dead of WWI. Waldman's point was a warning to Christians pressing for such religious symbols in the public square to beware of the spiritual danger of reducing the cross to a secular symbol of the dead in war.
I have published a response to Waldman on Religion Dispatches (Secularizing the Cross Response) As readers of this blog well know, I think that all religious symbols have combined religious and secular meaning. Not only is this not a danger, it is appropriate since religion is supposed to have this-worldly effects. That is part of the reason that religion can never be relegated to the private sphere.