I never thought that the neutrality of a state should mean prohibition? and likewise I never thought that laicism should mean abolition? Where is the religious freedom in Europe, and the censure of the space in the public sphere? What is at play here is freedom, one of the pillars of European identity!
In addition, the crucifix is part of European culture and history; it might have the same meaning like a flag, for example. Shouldn't a sane laicism respect this and every religious symbol as a sign of identity instead of an offense?
The only aim of this is cutting down on the presence of religion and faith in the public sphere: state funerals, crucifixes, the right to conscience objection and so on...
For whatever may come... I am getting some cans of paint to fill the town with crucifixes
In school, Obama, not being a believer at that moment, had to swear alleigance to the flag (a custom they have in schools) and he said "well, all of my life I have had to swear that alleigance ..." which includes the words "God and swear" and that never meant trouble of any kind.... If in situations like that, there is not trouble, surely, a crucifix in a school could never be considered to go against anybody's freedom.
I think there are two different dimensions of the issue but they intertwine:
- One part is identity, i.e. Europe is what it is and we are what we are ... and in this respect, removing the religious references of public life would be just like trying to blot out at a stroke, 2,000 years of history, which is, simply crazy. What will be next? the processions at Easter? It's our heritage...
- On the other hand, there is the legal point, i.e. : to what extent may the freedom claim of a person lead to prohibit the expression of freedom to the rest? there is not an objective question here - "Constitution or any of the rules imposed by the Strasbourg court"- that refers to the crucifixes or such a concrete thing .... So obviously in a judment of this characteristics there is a very important element of subjectivity from the judge although we don't know the foundation of it.