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3 7, 2:59am
Ah, sorry. This is stuff I should know, but I'm so used to people talking about banning the burqa that I jumped straight to it. My mistake. My point still broadly stands.
I think we may have slightly different experiences with crosses - I've encountered a few places which ban jewellery, but allow it if it's worn for religious reasons, which is what I was referring to. If that's less common than I thought, I apologise.
"In general, recognizing something as a religion is suppossed to serve the purpose of protecting people against harmful sects"
I'm aware I'm about to be somewhat extreme, but I'm not convinced that's the state's job. Holding a belief is protected by freedom of conscience - you can think 'I should kill the heathens' all you like, as long as you don't actually do it. And if the members of a religion do act on that belief, they can be punished under the appropriate laws against killing heathens. When you say "protecting people against harmful sects", it strikes me as the state judging people's professed beliefs before they act on them, and rewarding them for having 'good' ones.
I'm a little wary of the state, as you might be able to tell :P.
And yeah, the 'money and prejudices' thing is a bit of an issue too.