The American Humanist Association’s bid to have the Bladensburg Peace Cross war memorial torn down (or its cross member sawn off) continued this month with oral arguments at the Fourth Circuit court of appeals. The AHA lost their case last year and appealed in December 2015.
The First Liberty Institute, which is defending the cross, accurately Read more
The US Army 3rd Infantry Regiment — better known as The Old Guard — recently posted a US Army graphic by SPC Taylor Lutheran to Facebook which combined a photograph of President Obama at the Tomb of the Unknowns with a flag and the phrase “One Nation Under God:”
The image ended up irritating both “sides of the aisle,” as critics of President Obama questioned his acknowledgement of God, and critics of religion questioned Read more
US Army paratroopers recently visited The Hill of Crosses during a six-month deployment to Lithuania:
Members of Able Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade…
…were visiting the Hill of Crosses; a monument to the strength, pride and resolve of the Lithuanian people and everyone who has been repressed by tyranny.
Interestingly, the Hill of Crosses began as a war memorial, and it has Read more
One thing the US Army post at Fort Riley has learned is that you surrender to the wishes of Michael “Mikey” Weinstein at your own peril.
Weinstein has long claimed that his primary tool was CNN and FoxNews — by simply threatening to get military commanders on the news, he could get them to bow to his wishes.
The tables have reversed, though. A quick Read more
The Attorneys General from 26 states have signed a bipartisan brief in the ongoing case by the American Humanist Association to tear down the Bladensburg Peace Cross, a cross-shaped World War I memorial. As published by the Attorney General for South Dakota:
“The State Attorneys General are requesting the Federal Courts to recognize important Constitutional rights and respect the dedication, sacrifice, and freedoms earned by our veterans,” said Attorney General Jackley…
South Dakota and 24 other states are requesting the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to affirm a lower court’s ruling, which found the U.S. Constitution allows veterans memorials with religious symbolism…
Jackley highlighted something militant atheists are often hesitant to admit [emphasis added]: Read more
Michael “Mikey” Weinstein maintained his perfect record of zero wins in his years of lawsuits against the American government over religion.
Many may not even be aware he had been part of another lawsuit, but in May of this year Weinstein said he had “join[ed] forces” with the American Humanist Association to try to have the Bladensburg Peace Cross torn down. (Despite innumerable threats, Weinstein hasn’t filed a lawsuit on his own in years.) The Peace Cross is a 90-year old World War I memorial in Maryland.
In a summary judgment, a Federal court just dismissed (PDF) that lawsuit.
Importantly, US District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow’s ruling avoids the semantic gymnastics of other cases by not trying to avoid the fact that a cross is, indeed, a religious symbol. The ruling says that simply being a cross does not inherently mean it is unconstitutional [emphasis added]: Read more
Update: The creator of the monument explained the reason for his design here:
Al Larsen intended the small Latin cross in each silhouette to mark a grave — like the rows of white crosses at the Normandy American Cemetery in France, where more than 9,000 American World War II troops are buried.
“This is what it means to me,” Larsen said in an interview Wednesday. “It don’t mean no church thing.”
Americans United for the Separation of Church and State claims otherwise.
Todd Starnes at FoxNews highlights an effort by the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State to have a war memorial removed from a park in Knoxville, Iowa:
“It was clear to us it was a memorial to fallen veterans,” Mayor Brian Hatch told me. But it wasn’t clear to everyone.
About a month ago a citizen filed an anonymous complaint — arguing that the memorial was promoting Christianity and therefore violated the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution.
Mayor Hatch told me the city council ignored the complaint.
“We didn’t take any action because it (the memorial) did not have any religious ties to us at all,” he said. “I only see it as a memorial to the veterans and it shocked me that someone could see it otherwise.”
The offended party apparently called the AU, and the fight was on.
Americans United has since published a snarky reply, noting Read more