The "Pussy Riot" Controversy
(What Is The Proper Role Of Religion?)

�Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar�s,
and unto God those which are God�s�

Jesus Christ to the Chief Priest's Agents

With the rise of copycat incidents of the original "Pussy Riot" incident in Russia, the latest, happening in Cologne, Germany, as of this writing, the issue of whether these protests have validity, or not, within a democratic free state becomes a matter of importance in all free democracies.

The right to free group congregation, free assembly, and the separation of Church and State become once more important issues that the law must address.

Certainly, Churches have the right to hold their private congregations of worship, among their followers. But, just how private have these private congregations really been? And, have not the Churches themselves been doing the very same things as "Pussy Riot" has done, for years now!

For instance, when Churches condemn the morality of homosexuality, and women�s right to abortion, are they not breaking the law, by taking part in governmental matters outside their sphere of influence? When �right for lifers� protest around doctor�s offices and, in public, around hospitals, are they not doing the very same thing as "Pussy Riot" did? Are they not declaring for themselves the right to cross that line which separates the workings of Church and State? When they protest the rights of illegal immigrants are they not breaking the law themselves, that law that makes religion a non-taxable religious institution free of any governmental participation? As Christ Himself made very plain in His own words (above), there is a boundary between Church and state, not for its members, who have free beliefs, but for its institution as a group, or organization!

If Churches become organizations, special organizations, like the ones in the United States, that do not carry the obligation to support the Nation they live in, by not paying taxes, like all other citizens do, then they cannot take part in the political and even social concerns of the State like tax paying, responsible citizens do. They have, in essence, shrugged the social responsibility of free democratic citizens. They are perpetrating a fraud, by pretending to be a separate government in the state, which wants to spread its own law, while not following the laws of the accepted government. True, its members, as free citizens can believe whatever they like, but when they proclaim their religion, in any way, they have now declared themselves a government with laws circumventing the laws of the state, and are perpetrating a rebellion against the State, even more aggressive then the simple protest of "Pussy Riot" and their kind. Should they not be punished just as severely as "Pussy Riot" has?

Beliefs belong to all, especially in responsibly free democracies such as the United States, the European Union and Russia are supposed to be; but religions, which have now proclaimed themselves a separate State within a State, as the Vatican and the Orthodox Churches have, by taking part in political and social opinion, and backing political parties, have crossed the line of the separation of Church and State, especially when they have flaunted the responsibility to that State by not paying taxes to that same State, as all its legitimate citizens do.

"Pussy Riot" has raised important questions, as to just how the institution of Religion fits into the larger Institution of the State within which it exists. If Religions choose to flaunt love, the charter, which God ordained them to follow, and have instead become a governmental institution that punishes as their vicious institutions of the Middle Ages did, then do they still deserve the right to be called religions at all?

Power, Glory and Greed, even unto the undoing of the free will God gave man, are these the new paths of religion?

For further comments on this essay see: ERRATA, Further Comments on Utopia Essay



Originally Published:

August 24, 2012


January 2, 2014