I have been listening to the debate on whether or not the chapel at Iowa State should have the class in it removed and I wanted to discuss all the different arguments that I have heard. I love analyzing arguments for any flaws in them and I am the discussion chair for the club.
I do have a huge problem with the way GSB is going about this whole issue. They are only caring about how many people all against keeping the cross there it shouldn’t be about that because that is and argument ad populum logical fallacy. They should look at the arguments for and against keeping it to see who has the stronger argument. of course asking GSB to actually be reasonable might be asking too much
It has historical value
This seems almost like a red herring to me. The fact is having a cross, specifically a huge cross, violates the separation of church and state. Furthermore, Morill hall on-campus had a much larger chapel in its butt when it was renovated they removed the chapel part and kept the room as a lecture hall so since they didn’t keep it for historical reasons in the Morill hall case they shouldn’t apply that same logic to the chapel in the MU
There is a curtain covering the cross for people who are offended by it
This to me seems like a straw man. We aren’t arguing against it because it is offensive to us. I ,as an atheist, am not offended by cross. We are arguing against it for two main reasons : it violates church state separation and it isn’t inclusive.
If we just allow all manners of different types of faith symbols than it is fine to leave it up.
This is wrong for three main reasons:
- what about atheists? Do we not count in being able to use the space?
- Church state separation also means not privileging religion over non-religion
- if we allow symbols for every faith that could possibly be represented at Iowa State the entire room will be full of faith symbols hence why we should just remain neutral and allow students to bring things in when they need to use them
If anyone has any other arguments that they have heard I would love to deconstruct them so please post in the comments and I’ll edit this to reflect any other arguments.
for posterity here is a pic from the mu’s website