Response on cross incomplete
In response to Mr. Gregg Shoop’s letter regarding my own about the cross on Mount Tzouhalem, I would like to respond with the following: he describes me as “articulate.” Well and good, but he did not adress much of what I said and there was a definite hint of “articulate but…” in his reply. There were four points in my letter. They were the following: the illegality of the cross’s destruction, the illegality of vandalism, the feelings of people who would like to see the cross restored, and the role of indigenous elders in erecting the original cross. Only two of the four were addressed by Mr. Shoop in any way, so his response was less than complete.
His general comments about Christianity were outside the letter’s scope, but I will respond. The contention that we should accept Christianity’s apparent decline and the erasure of its symbols, history and influence as inevitable or beneficial does not hold water. The “bum count in pews” reference does not take into account many other factors such as home churches, on line participation, alternate forms of worship, and cultural Christians. World wide, as well, the Christian situation is very different from what he described in his letter.
He states that the mountain speaks of “God, beauty, power and grace.” But it does not follow that we should automatically eliminate all religious or cultural symbols, (of any religion or denomination for that matter ) and the existence of nature’s beauty, through God’s creation, does not mean that we need to destroy crosses, take down monuments or insist on empty spaces in deference to Him.
Chief Seymour’s sentiment was supportive, period. Canada is definitely divided. “Differences” does not cover it. Has Mr. Shoop not been paying attention to the news? The entire world is divided, Canada perhaps more than a lot of other nations. Lastly, the reference to human rights, although always relevant (suffrage, racial equality etc.) is unnecessary. Canada already has every convention in place to guarantee and sustain human rights, and is one of the most tolerant nations on earth.
All in all it seemed to me a curious letter, and a questionable response to the issue of the cross and Christianity in general.