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The Constitution and the Cross [View All]

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groovedaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 12:02 PM
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The Constitution and the Cross
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When the Supreme Court takes up a religion case, it often prompts overheated charges: There is a war against Christianity under way; or civil liberties groups are trying to turn this into a secular nation. The court is scheduled to hear arguments on Wednesday in a case that raises none of these issues even though Americans may well be treated to another round of scare stories.

The narrow question is whether a large cross that has been placed on federal land violates the establishment clause of the First Amendment, the founders direction that there must be a wall of separation between church and state. The court should rule that it does.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars erected a cross in 1934 in San Bernardino County, Calif. in what is now the Mojave National Preserve to honor Americas war dead. Since then, the cross has been replaced several times, most recently around 1998. Its religious significance is clear, but the National Park Service has not allowed other religions to add symbols. In 1999, the park service denied a request by an individual to place a Buddhist memorial in the area. The cross has also been the site of Easter sunrise services for more than 70 years.

Frank Buono, a former assistant superintendent of the preserve who said that he still visits regularly, sued to challenge the displays constitutionality.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/07/opinion/07wed1.html?t...
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