Re "L.A. County seal again to feature a Christian cross," Jan. 8
In 2004, when the Board of Supervisors voted to remove the cross from the L.A. County seal, the Anti-Defamation League commended the supervisors "for showing respect for the diversity of the people of the community."
On Tuesday, the board reversed course, restoring the cross — universally recognized as the symbol of Christianity — to the seal. This act sends a divisive message: that the county officially endorses Christianity over other faiths.
The ADL seeks to safeguard religious freedom. We believe the best way to do so is through the separation of church and state embodied in the California Constitution and the U.S. Constitution.
This constitutional requirement in no way reflects hostility toward religion. Rather, it reflects the founders' profound respect for individual religious liberty and diversity in America. This separation is a primary reason why America is the most religious of all the Western nations.
The board showed respect for the diversity of its residents when it voted to remove the cross almost a decade ago. On Tuesday, it fell down on the job.
Amanda F. Susskind
The writer is director of the Anti-Defamation League's Pacific Southwest Region.
I was appalled to read that the supervisors voted to return a Christian cross to the official seal displayed on all county flags, vehicles and official correspondence. Do they mean to tell me that with at least two major departments scandal-plagued and sources of embarrassment for years, the supervisors have nothing better to do than diddle with installing crosses on seals? How many millions of dollars will be wasted defending legal challenges to this action?
As a longtime Los Angeles County taxpayer, I am outraged by the incompetence that resides at the highest levels of county governance.
Kim W. Carney