Memorial Replaced after Secularist Complaint
In Knoxville, Iowa, a silhouette of a soldier kneeling at a cross-shaped headstone (previously discussed) was replaced with a bronze battlefield cross after Americans United for the Separation of Church and State complained.
Sponsored by the local AMVETS Post 63, the monument was erected by Don Zoutte, who intended it to recall the iconic picture of the headstones of Normandy — not to establish a state religion:
Zoutte says he hopes the new memorial will put to bed all of the controversy that has surrounded the community over the current memorial that’s there. “It was never, ever, ever meant to offend anybody. I’m the one that put it up…we didn’t see it as a religious symbol…a warrior saying goodbye to another warrior, and not even once did we think about that as being a cross. It was a grave marker, and obviously somebody doesn’t agree with that,” said Zoutte.
Some militant atheists were so hypersensitive they were even offended by the description of the new memorial — because it was a battlefield cross. Either because of their threats, or because of the city’s own newfound politically-correct sensitivity, the Knoxville memorial will be the first one in the nation to not be called a battlefield cross [emphasis added]:
“We’ll have a rather unique plaque, because ours is going to say ‘battlefield memorial,’ while every other one that this company makes in the whole world says ‘battlefield cross.’ We were asked not to put the word cross on it,” said Zoutte.
So who is winning this “culture war” over religion?
“I learned that things are way too politically correct in the United States right now,” said Don Zoutte, of the Knoxville AMVets. “The rally we had almost 2000 people, the complaint we had was one.”
In a bit of comeuppance, the members of the council who voted to move the original memorial were subsequently voted out of office.