In light of the recent attack on the menorah and our university's subsequent stand for religious tolerance, it is only right that the university should do even more to respect religious tolerance and diversity.
By placing the manger and the menorah in the Quad they are necessarily endorsing these two religions over others and this why we are requesting that our lord and pasta-based savior be represented and indeed any other faith that wishes to have a display should be similarly facilitated. The university cannot and should not limit respect for religious beliefs to two religions they deem appropriate, it is a principle that must be applied without preference.
It is with the utmost concern that I am writing to you in response to your email regarding the vandalism of the menorah in the Krentzman Quad this past week. I wish to express my unreserved condolences to the many people of Jewish faith who were rightly abhorred by this clearly malicious and religiously targeted attack.
The right to express one’s religious beliefs in a public forum is indeed a basic, fundamental one and I share your concern over the seemingly endless growth of religious intolerance in our society today and felt your email was entirely appropriate.
In this spirit of religious respect and diversity, I am writing to you today to request that, in addition to the existing Christian manger scene, Jewish menorah symbol and various secular objects such as the trees and wreaths that are dotted around campus, the university would consider erecting a temporary statue/symbol in honor of my own faith’s religious holiday.
I am a proud member of The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster and at this time of year we celebrate our holiday known as “Holiday”. Aside from Pastaover and Ramendan this is one of the most important times of the year for me and my fellow Pastafarians. Although there are no formal celebrations as such, it is imperative for Pastafarians to give thanks and praise at this time of year for our Lord and pasta-based savior, without whose noodley benevolence we would not even exist.
I am aware of at least a hundred other Pastafarians that attend Northeastern and I am currently in the process of gathering these signatures and indeed the signatures of all people who respect religious freedoms and tolerance in support of our request. I do not need to tell you that respect for one’s religion though should not be commanded by numbers or influence but by the aforementioned principles of equality and tolerance.
My fellow Pastafarians and I would be more than willing to cover the cost of the display and I can personally assure the university that it would not dominate the other displays nor offend any sound-minded, religiously tolerant person. It would merely be a small, tasteful depiction of our one true, carbohydrate-filled God.
Northeastern University’s prompt and stern reaction to the desecration of an overtly religious symbol confirmed to me that this university, which I love dearly, is willing to stand up to the forces of religious intolerance in favor of freedom of speech and expression for all people of faith. I trust that this admirable policy will continue and that you will facilitate my request without haste.
Class of 2013