Heavily Catholic Poland has joined the Vatican in criticizing a European court ruling against the display of crucifixes in Italian schools.
Polish President Lech Kaczynski said his country will never agree to remove crosses from its schools.
The Nov. 3 ruling by the European Court of Human Rights does not require that Poland remove the crosses that hang in most public schools. It could, however, eventually force a review of the use of religious symbols in government-run school across Europe.
The decision touched a nerve in Poland, where religious symbols were banned from public buildings under communist rule but embraced with the return to democracy 20 years ago as an expression of national sovereignty.
During Independence Day celebrations on 11 November in Warsaw, Kaczynski said that "nobody in Poland will accept the message that you can't hang crosses in schools."
"One shouldn't count on that. Perhaps elsewhere, but never in Poland," said Kaczynski.
Lech Walesa, the pro-democracy dissident and former president — himself a believer who often wears a pin of Mary on his lapel — also defended his country's right to display a symbol central to the nation's Christian heritage.
"Minorities must know their place," Walesa said on Thursday during an interview with a TVN24 television station. "We must respect minorities but also protect the rights of the majority."
About 90 percent of Poles are Catholic, and regular church attendance today remains much higher than in more secular Western Europe.
Poles' strong identification with the church goes back centuries but in recent decades has been strengthened by Polish-born Pope John Paul II, who led the church for 27 years until his death in 2005.
The Vatican has also denounced the European court's ruling.
Attribution of this article unknown since it was found on a Polish-American Yahoo Group without credit.
It should be obvious to most that much of Western Europe once staunchly Catholic has abandoned devotion to the Apostolic Church. The court may also have other motives regarding their decision. The Muslim population is growing rapidly in many E.U. countries. The Netherlands may have a Muslim majority in as little as three decades. This law would preempt Islamic symbols displayed in public schools as well.
The current Muslim population in Poland is approximately .001%. Mostly Tartars who settled and assimilated after the Horde of Mongols left Europe. Last year, 5% of the total population of 27 EU countries was Muslim. But, according to forecasts, the figure would rise to 20 per cent by 2050, according to UK Telegraph reports.
Treaties, laws and EU Court decisions are squeezing the sovereignty out of individual member states. For many nations like Poland, Czech Republic, etc. it's the case of 'golden handcuffs' not being able to leave the Union due to economic redistributive schemes among the collection of states making up the EU that benefits former Eastern Bloc Countries still building their post communist free markets.
A moral dilemma for certain regarding religious symbols. Home customs and rules are supplanted by the collective in an ever widening scope. You can't even buy duck's blood at the grocery store in Poland anymore. Not that czarnina tastes much different with beef blood substitute - it the principle not the flavor in question here. Could it be not long before paczki is outlawed because of it's high lard and sugar content?
Conclusion: Government in doses above a teaspoon - bad, very very bad. Eventually, the way the EU is going European democracy will be worst than Communism Poland experienced for 45 years. A new Solidarnosc, anyone?
Labels: cross, crucifix, Poland, religion, symbol