Jesus statue at Whitefish Mountain Resort in Montana

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    July 9, 2013 11:24 a.m.

    @ Mona: A religious symbol on public land gives the impression that the government is favoring that religion by giving it access not afforded to other religious groups.

    @ UtahBlueDevil: Many government facilities rent out space - and the groups that rent that space are allowed to use it for reasonable purposes. But those spaces are not just for rent to religious groups - they are available for rent to anyone or any group who can pay the rental cost.

    @ the truth: There are many limits placed on expression in the public sphere. Don't believe me? See what happens if you walk naked down the street or play your music loud at 2 a.m. or build a big middle finger at Whitefish. Churches and religious individuals should be held to the same public standards as everyone else.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 8, 2013 11:24 a.m.

    the truth
    Holladay, UT

    @LDS Liberal

    Have you ever considered artistic expression of ones faith?

    Freedom of expression is protected even on public lands and the public square, even for religious people.
    5:36 p.m. July 5, 2013


    So then 'the truth',
    are you supporting graffiti [artistic expression] "even on public lands and the public square"?

    You can't have it both ways.
    Don't be a hypocrite.

  • Mona Beaverton, OR
    July 6, 2013 10:55 a.m.

    pragmatistferlife, where is it written that there cannot be displays of religious symbols on federal land? I sincerely want to know. The Constitution provides for separation of church & state, but I don't believe that having a religious symbol of any kind on federal land is violating that. So it must be a later interpretation?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 5, 2013 6:15 p.m.

    "No where in our Constitution is the permission given for a private concern to use the public square to advertise their product. The purpose of the Constitution amendment about religion was for the exact purpose of preventing the government to favor a religion. "

    Ummmm...... but if a religious organization leases land, are they still prohibited from using it for religious use..... No. Many churches lease school facilities with out issue to hold their religious services. Lets not get carried away with church and state arguments here. If our church, LDS, were to lease a convention center.... owned by a city... or state.... we could surely post anything we want, and say anything we want in that facility.

    Lets not confuse issues here.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    July 5, 2013 5:36 p.m.

    @LDS Liberal

    Have you ever considered artistic expression of ones faith?

    Freedom of expression is protected even on public lands and the public square, even for religious people.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 5, 2013 5:30 p.m.

    Those of us who are LDS are very fond of the statue of Christ on Temple Square. Many of us often look at the statues of Angel Moroni that grace many of our temples. Who hasn't paused in front of the magnificent statue of Joseph Smith? Who has looked at the paintings on Temple Square without seeing the faces of brothers, sisters, mothers and fathers who turned to deity after turning away from the profane?

    Paintings, statues and scriptures each remind us of the places, the people and the doctrine that make life purposeful.

    Those who are teachable invite inspiration, even when that inspiration comes via a statue.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 5, 2013 2:17 p.m.

    Regardless of what the courts say;
    This pretty well explains it to me.

    Ten Commandment #4,
    Thou shalt not make any graven images...

    Why Bible believing folks keep insisting on putting up statues ANYWHERE is beyond me.

    July 5, 2013 9:07 a.m.

    Saying it is inappropriate to have a statue of Jesus on federal land is not interfering with anybody's religion. Christians can still believe in Jesus.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 5, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    As typical, hysterics fromt he left over nothing.

    The Federal Government is PROHIBITED from interferring with religion in any form for any reason: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

    For those who try to use the "establishment clause", "shall make no law" covers their twisting of the Constitution.

    For those who think that "an establishment" of religion, or existeing church, erected the statue, "shall make no law" still prohibits the Federal Goverment for interferring.

    For those who think that they should be exempt from "religious words", the freedom of speech portion of the 1st Amendment nixes that idea.

    For those who object to people gathering to see the statue or to pray while in proximity of the statue, the "peaceful assembly" part of the 1st Amendment allows that.

    No matter how the anti-religionists frame their agnony at being in America, WE, THE PEOPLE, have forever forbidden the Federal Government to interfere with religion - in any way.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 4, 2013 5:06 p.m.

    Would the letter writer have the same feelings if the items in question were crescent moons or Buddha? Or are only Christian symbols the ones that matter?

    I find it ironic that the same folks who complain about big government interrupting our lives are the first ones to complain if a Muslim Rec center or temple is built in their communities.

    Sorry repubs, you can't have it both ways.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    July 4, 2013 2:15 p.m.

    Last time I checked, there are lots of things I'm not allowed to do on private land that I am allowed to do on my own property. For some reason, people who espouse a certain conservative philosophy in this country seem to think that the Constitution is a Christian document. Guess again.

  • Wally West SLC, UT
    July 4, 2013 1:50 p.m.

    RE: Mr. J

    I see the irony. Socialist leaning & highly religious (an oxymoron behind the Zion Curtain) Brazil has citizens who have perspective and balance and not a bunch of easily offended puritans.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 4, 2013 11:08 a.m.

    Comparing Brazil's public land to America's is comparing apples to oranges. Notice, the Brazilian favelas or ghettos which house hundreds of thousands are all built on public land. Their laws and enforcement is far different than our own.

    I am a Mormon and a Christian and even I'm getting tired of a few vocal Christians playing the victim card incessantly. Yes, we get it. You're still upset over the defeat of prop 8. Now get over it. There are other more important issues to discuss. The unsustainable military spending, bad economy, and tax cuts for the richies all need to be addressed.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    July 4, 2013 11:01 a.m.

    Remember, if allowed, every religion would have equal rights of placing symbols, monuments etc on public land whether it be Catholic, Buddhist, Islam or Protestant.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    July 4, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    Churches and nonprofit religious organizations that object to providing birth control coverage on religious grounds do not have to pay for it.

    Female employees could get free contraceptive coverage through a separate plan that would be provided by a health insurer. Institutions objecting to the coverage would not pay for the contraceptives.

    Insurance companies would bear the cost of providing the separate coverage, with the possibility of recouping the costs through lower health care expenses resulting in part from fewer births.

    If you want to use the "money is fungible" argument then that argument can also be applied to tithes collected by churches and church-owned businesses.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:48 a.m.

    "The Fourth of July renews our Constitution and the freedoms it provides. Let's celebrate the good things of our country."

    Actually (this is easy to find in both a US History class and Wikipedia), the Constitution was adopted on September 17, 1787.

    I think the document you are unsuccessfully attempting to refer to is called the Declaration of Independence.

    Just so you're aware, they aren't the same.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:40 a.m.

    No where in our Constitution is the permission given for a private concern to use the public square to advertise their product. The purpose of the Constitution amendment about religion was for the exact purpose of preventing the government to favor a religion.

    When religion advertises in the public square, whether it be by clothing, jewelry, religious actions, public prayers, statues and even buildings, they are violating the Constitution of the United States for the unfettered freedom of religion of others. Yet we do allow these things because of tradition.

    Today the public square is taken to be the physical boundary of public land and the air space immediately above. Private property is likewise so defined. The sky, the view and that part of the world available to our eyes and ears is not yet allocated.

    When technology makes it possible to paint the sky, will parts of the sky become private property? Even today our view is often blocked by billboards.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    July 4, 2013 10:38 a.m.

    The court said it can stay, so what's the big whoop?
    Anytime a religious group decides to set up a religious monument on public land, that is cause for concern in my opinion. The court weighed the issues and decided the harm was negligible. Sounds reasonable.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    July 4, 2013 10:34 a.m.

    @Mister J --

    "Let me just point out that there is a similar statue in Liberal Brazil overlooking a very carnal & secular metropolis yet I know of no howling & whining at all."

    That is, of course, because Brazil is actually a very religious country.

    The population of Brazil was 90% Catholic up until the 1970s. In fact, Brazil continues to have the highest number of Catholics of any country IN THE WORLD.

    These days, Brazil is still 65% Catholic. Another 22% are Evangelical Protestant, and only 8% identify as non-religious.

  • Eric Samuelsen Provo, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:33 a.m.

    Uh, it's on public land. So, yeah, there's a Church/State issue.

  • Grover Salt Lake City, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:30 a.m.

    J: How irony? Brazil and the USA? Different traditions. We have a written constitution. They do not. Ours allows for no State religion. They can have whatever they choose. Easy, right? If they had a pentangle looking over Rio would you see irony then?

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:15 a.m.


    Nice red herring first were did any of the posters claim to be traumatized by the statues and secondly how do you not see the two issues are not the same argrument rather then in conflict with one another. People that do not share your religious views do not wish to have them forced on us. If the Catholic Church wants to engage in activities outside its eclisatical duties then it is going to have to flollow the civil laws just like anyone else.

  • Mister J Salt Lake City, UT
    July 4, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    Because I love irony... Let me just point out that there is a similar statue in Liberal Brazil overlooking a very carnal & secular metropolis yet I know of no howling & whining at all.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    July 4, 2013 9:00 a.m.

    I find it fascinating that the posters who claim to be traumatized over a Jesus statue (or highway memorial) in the public realm tend to be the same one who have no problem forcing the Catholic Church to pay for their birth control - then they have the audacity to lecture about minority rights, religious freedom and tolerance when it obvious they are only qualified to provide an illustration of arrogance, politically correct fundamentalism and hypocrisy

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 4, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    Stop playing the victim for your party's lack of popularity. Look inward at the obstruction. Stop blaming others.

    All of your fears are completely slippery slope irrational fears. If you really fear all church buildings will be hidden someday, then please never leave your cave, keep the tin foil hat on, listen to bro beck, and never come outside.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    July 4, 2013 8:41 a.m.

    According to court records, there have been 20 cases filed in the United States District Court for the District of Montana in the last seven days. From their descriptions, none seemed to be about religion. There may be valid objections to this type of lawsuit, but court congestion is not one of them.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 4, 2013 8:34 a.m.

    Religion is really playing victim these days. Consider that the statue in question is on public land, and that in the end it was allowed to stay. I have no problem with that, because, in Whitefish, the statue is up on the hill and not metaphorically wandering the halls of government. Whitefish is a great ski town full of Calgarians and delightful pubs like the Bulldog where, to say the least, one does not feel the pall of religion hanging over everything. The two can coexist peacefully. And, although I don't believe that some divine being will suspend all natural laws at my behest, I have invoked such help anyway when close encounters with snowboarders occur.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    July 4, 2013 8:26 a.m.

    Mike your ruse is way too obvious. You don't give a hoot about the courts you're just upset because once again Jesus is under attack. Mike, it was federal land. Have you ever seen a lawsuit about removing a religious symbol from a church on private property? No and you never will. Get over yourself. Religion is sill King.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 4, 2013 6:49 a.m.

    "I think it is time for the courts to get back to our original Constitution, granting freedoms from these suits."

    This is exactly what the courts are there for... to ensure the minority in society has redress when it feels its rights are being trampled on by the majority. An as was the example in the case you site... the courts made the decision granting maximum liberty.

    In this case, both sides were given the opportunity to make their arguments, and the courts made an eqyutable decision.... just as the constitution designed them to do. Providing a venue for debate and defense of our rights is exactly what the courts were established for..... what would you rather them do?

    Proved a venue for people to sue for a million dollars because they didn't know their coffee was hot?

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    July 4, 2013 12:57 a.m.

    How dare a "minority" group avail itself to its constitutional rights? The nurve.