Mojave Cross Can Stay

28 04 2010

In a 5-4 ruling (surprise surprise) the Supreme Court has laid the smackdown on the ACLU and ruled that a cross can stay in the Mojave Desert as a war memorial.  Tony Kennedy wrote the plurality opinion, invoking the thousands of crosses overseas marking graves of unknown soldiers.

Justice Stevens dissented, arguing that

“[The cross] is the symbol of one particular sacrifice, and that sacrifice carries deeply significant meaning for those who adhere to the Christian faith.”

The article notes that this decision did not settle the issue, but rather punted it back to the lower courts — the First Amendment question was not at issue, but rather a federal law requiring the government to transfer the land to private hands.

Adam Liptak notes that

The 5-to-4 decision provided an unusually vivid glimpse into how deeply divided the court is on the role religious symbols may play in public life […]

With the talk of Washington being who Obama will appoint to replace Justice Stevens, it seems that this decision will end up being relevant in the upcoming confirmation hearings.

Is the cross endorsing the Christian faith?  I don’t think it is, but then what do I know, I’m just a law student.  I think we should keep religion out of politics altogether, but I laugh at the thought of our wonderful leaders in Washington adhering to that idea.

h/t: The Moderate Voice




One response

28 04 2010

In my opinion, a cross in the desert marking the grave of an unknown soldier doesn’t endorse Christianity as much as a cross, not marking anything, just sitting around on a strip of federal land, from the case last year that Scalia wrote the opinion for (eff, I can’t remember case names to save my life). But I also know nothing. I am also a heathen that worships the moon, according to popular Christian thinkers. 🙂

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