Bavaria to force public buildings to hang cross at entrance

Bavaria to force public buildings to hang cross at entrance

Bavarian PM Markus Söder hangs a cross at the entrance of the state chancellery in Munich Photo Credit: Germany AP

The European Humanist Federation is deeply outraged by the decision of the Bavarian government to force public buildings throughout Bavaria to hang a cross in the entrance area of ​​every official building.

Following the decision, the government stated: “as an expression of the historical and cultural character of Bavaria, a cross should be clearly perceptible as a visible commitment to the basic values of the legal and social order in Bavaria and Germany.”

The EHF joins its member organization, the Humanistischer Verband Bayern, in forcefully rejecting this decision.

As a symbol, the cross by no means connects all the citizens of Bavaria!

– emphasized Michael Bauer, chairman of the HVD Bayern and EHF Vice-President. Bauer sees in the decision rather a breach of the requirement for state neutrality.

For us, the Christian cross is not a symbol of common values. Self-determination, freedom and tolerance are neither embodied by the cross, nor the crucifix.

added Bauer, reminding that about a quarter of the inhabitants of Bavaria are non-religious.

Compulsory crucifixes in official buildings are no more than the government’s unsuitable attempt to cover up the uncertainty of its own political future, Bauer continued.

The EHF also joins the HVD Bayern in urging the Bavarian state government to address the really important issues of integration, rather than promoting polemic via over-simplified symbolic policies.

Background: By order of the state cabinet, crucifixes are to be erected in the entrance area of ​​each public service building in the Free State on June 1, 2018, as a supposed “expression of the historical and cultural character of Bavaria” as well as a “fundamental symbol of the cultural identity of Christian-occidental character”. Municipalities, districts and districts are advised to proceed accordingly.

“Bavaria is a free state. The national colors are white and blue. The coat of arms is determined by law. This is stated in Article 1 of our constitution. Neither the cross nor the crucifix represent the Bavarian coat of arms. Article 142 also states unequivocally that there is no state church, “said Bauer.