After a local organization donated a memorial to honor fallen police officers, the city leaders voted to literally scrub an “offensive” word from the monument. However, once the community saw what they had done, they immediately came up with a plan to fight back.
When the Tega Cay Women’s Club erected a monument in honor of fallen police officers, it included a heartfelt, inspirational “prayer” of protection and strength for active-duty officers. However, just days after gifting the display to the department, they returned to find that the Tega Cay City Council had buffed away a word found three times on the statue.
As our elected officials struggle to please everyone, they are finding that it is a fruitless endeavor. While the purpose is to refrain from offending certain groups, it’s implementation often causes even more outrage than it was attempting to stifle.
According to WJZY, the Tega Cay City Council voted to remove the word “Lord” from the prayer on the fallen officers memorial located outside of the new police station. The city defended the defacement, claiming that they did so on behalf of a small minority of individuals who were offended by the “Christian” sentiment.
“These people, you know, they put their lives on the line every day for the safety of the community and that’s what we hope people get out of it,” said Tega Cay City Manager Charlie Funderburk. “A little surprised, but as the complaints came in the end result was pretty clear.”
Shortly after removing the word, which was listed on the monument three times, the city discovered that they had made a terrible decision. Within days, the community raised its voices, demanding that the officials they had elected to represent their values restore the monument to its original form and stop catering to the offended minority.
“There is just as many people upset now that it got removed over people upset it was there in the first place. There is no win here at all,” said Funderburk.
Just as soon as it had removed the word, the city was forced to re-evaluate its decision. WBTV reports that city leaders quickly reversed their initial decision and apologized, confirming that they will restore the prayer on the fallen officers memorial to its uncensored message.
“We attempted to find a compromise but failed as our community has further divided. In an attempt to find a resolution, we have upset parties on both sides of this issue and for that we are truly sorry,” a post from the City’s Facebook read, announcing the memorial’s removal.
In its apology, the council claimed that “none of what has transpired was an attack on our Police Department or anyone’s faith.” However, the Christian majority in the community feels otherwise.
“This was a tough week in Tega Cay. It is our hope that we can now move forward together and continue to be the strong, welcoming community that we have always been known for. Regardless of our different viewpoints, our people are what truly makes this City such a wonderful place,” the message read.
Additionally, officials stated that “everyone is treated equally here,” but, as many in the city believe, it seems that the council’s initial decision intended to impose the non-religious minority’s beliefs on the rest of the community. Funderburk claims that the council hoped to avoid holding one group’s values over another but merely ended up obliging the non-religious demographic’s wishes.
“There was never any intent to hold one religion in higher regard to another, or one person in higher regard than another. It was a donation from a civic group,” said Funderburk.
Before the city’s reversal, the community had announced plans to host an open prayer at the monument in peaceful protest. However, it is unclear whether or not they will go forward with the gathering since the city promised to restore the display.
The community awaits the city leaders’ promise to reinstate the word “Lord” to each spot from which it was stripped. Until the minor correction is completed, residents remain suspicious of the council’s constant flip-flopping on the issue.
The story is a perfect case of just how far the outrage mob is willing to go to ensure that no religious group is allowed to showcase their faith. Ironically, their fight for religious equality is merely a front for imposing their own beliefs on the majority.