Supreme Court rules 7-2 that 'Peace Cross' can remain standing

The Supreme Court's cross case was its top religion-related case this term.

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  • zipadeedoodah Lehi, UT
    June 21, 2019 9:05 p.m.

    It is no surprise Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayer dissented here. These liberal justices were appointed by Bill Clinton and Barack Obama respectively and have sided nearly always with liberal thinking on the issues, setting aside religious freedom.

  • county mom Austin, UT
    June 21, 2019 5:00 p.m.

    Lily Munster, You see, I have no problem with other people's relationship with their God. (As long as they don't call for my death.)
    The Constitution of this Republic protects everyone's right to worship without government intervention, interferance, or endorsement of any religion. As long as that religion doesn't preach death, destruction, or treason, which interferes with the constitutional rights of others.

  • Lilly Munster , 00
    June 21, 2019 3:52 p.m.

    If you think that this is perfectly acceptable, both legally and morally, because "Christians are the majority in this Christian Nation," consider this:
    Just 20 short years from now, this will be a majority Catholic, Latino Nation. That is not speculation, that is fact.
    Explain to your young grandchildren now, how they and their children should not feel marginalized or pushed aside when there will be statues of the Madonna, prayers to the Queen of Heaven, in all our public schools and public meetings. National Holidays that honor the Virgin of Guadalupe and the Catholic Liturgical Calendar. No surprise if you argued that overt religious symbols and observances do NOT cross the line of Separation of Church and State. We will have no arguments to prevent any of that. It's called....the Tyranny of The Majority, and we overlooked that.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    June 21, 2019 1:15 p.m.

    When the Maoists took control of China, they immediately went on a campaign to destroy elements of Chinese culture pre-socialism. The campaign was to destroy every vestige of "The Four Olds" : Old Customs, Old Culture, Old Habits, and Old Ideas.

    This, of course meant destroy old religious customs, old religious moral culture and symbols, old religious worship habits, and old religious ideas.

    We see that some are trying to carry on this work in America.

  • county mom Austin, UT
    June 21, 2019 10:40 a.m.

    While the government spends billions, I would dare to say trillions on things that are against my religous beliefs. We have a Supreme Court case over $117,000..... spent on up keep of a WWI Memorial. Seriously?
    Just because of the shape of the thing.

    Jesus Christ suffered for our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. That's where He bleed from every pore. On the cross He died, but in the Garden Tomb He was resurrected. That's where His spirit returned to His body. It was there that the angels appeared and said," Why seek ye the living among the dead." " He is risen!" Two of the most significant Christian events happened in gardens. Of course we can add a stable. Jesus Christ was a carpenter by trade. Two of His Apostles were fishermen by trade... I can go on. Oh there are so many things that can be removed or renamed in order for us to not have any possible "Christian" symbols. Of course, if all Christian symbolism must be removed from public view, then religious symbols from all religions must be removed. For the government cannot support or endorse any religion. (That's not what the constitution says, but lets go with it.) There are those who worship the earth?

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    June 21, 2019 4:16 a.m.

    @Ernest T. Bass:
    "that the people who are cheering this decision (religious symbol on public land funding by public funds) are the same people who were incredibly upset a while back when an Islamic Mosque was put in New York"

    Well, I think that it is more correct to say that . . . some . . . of the people who are cheering this decision were upset a while back about the mosque.

    Yes, they are hypocritical and they should be broad minded. An attack on the freedom of conscience of people on one belief system is an attack on the freedom of conscience of all religious traditions.

    But some of the people in this forum who are defending this decision are the very same ones who were protesting on this forum about Kearns High School banning some athletes from football because the athletes did something off-campus that many consider to be immoral. They were concerned about government imposing religion on people but in this case, they recognize that displaying the cross is not an imposition of religion.

    So we have some backwards and progressive people on the same side of this issue.

  • Lilly Munster , 00
    June 21, 2019 3:00 a.m.

    This Nation is not a Christian Nation. It is a secular Democracy. That is what keeps our LDS Faith safe and secure. If you have them, ask your LDS grandparents what it was like to live in a darker time when being persecuted, often with violence, was prevalent. They were persecuted by the same ones who are demanding preference in this matter. The constant demonizing of Liberals, Progressives, and Democrats on this sight gives witness to religious intolerance.
    It is irrational to trash those who understand that when any one religion, even one that has always dominated in our public square, through exclusion of other religions, when the absolute truth is that if ANY religion is given automatic and assumptive priority, then NO religion is safe from persecution.
    Imagine the arguments if the Star of David, or even the Muslim Crescent, was the prevailing monument on our public spaces, to the uniform exclusion of all others, and had been from our inception as a Nation? It is absurd to insist that a Christian Cross is not a religious symbol.
    It has only and ever been a symbol of Christianity. Would you say that if a Star of David was imprinted on your street signs?

  • SliceofHumble Issaquah, WA
    June 20, 2019 7:23 p.m.

    This country was founded mostly by Christians fleeing religious persecution in Europe....its because of Christians that other religions have also been free to worship here. Freedom of religion is so important it's enshrined in the Constitution! The dissenting Justices are an embarrassment!

  • 1covey Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:56 p.m.

    The Bladensburg monument was originally erected by the local American Legion. Had those Legionnaires been told their monument would be taken down or destroyed, they most likely would have refused to sell the land. But there was no complaint then; so there should be no complaint, now. SCOTUS was right in stating that religious belief had been overtaken by history. Nowadays, things can be different. For some time, all military personnel have a religious preference listed on their dogtags and is on record. Grave markers have religious symbols accordingly. A monument to many servicemen should have appropriate symbols for those killed of different faiths if religious symbols are used at all.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:47 p.m.

    What is really dangerous is that there are people so extreme in our country that they see threats and plots of racism, homophobia, bigotry, misogyny, and hate in anyone who disagrees with them.

    I agree extremism -- right or left -- is our greatest danger.

  • one old man MSC, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:35 p.m.

    "It is Sad that displaying a Christian cross had to be defended by the Supreme Court."

    It is sad that displaying ANY religious symbol had to be defended by the Supreme Court.

    Experience has shown me -- a life long Christian -- that too many of my fellow Christians are anything but tolerant of the beliefs of others.

    It was that kind of thing that finally led me to simply stay home on Sundays. My church now is 1/2 hour at 9:30 on KSL. I get a much better spiritual recharge from that than I ever did in three hours before.

  • one old man MSC, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:29 p.m.

    "I am disappointed but not surprised that the two Communists on the Supreme Court dissented. They are enemies of the Constitution and true freedom, yet they are on the highest court. This is very dangerous."

    What is really dangerous is that there are people so extreme in our country that they see threats and communist plots or socialism in anyone who disagrees with them.

    Extremism -- right or left -- is our greatest danger.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:22 p.m.

    Atheism is not a belief.

    Belief: noun
    1something believed; an opinion or conviction:
    An opinion or conviction there is no god.

    2confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof:
    There is no god because god is not provable.

    3confidence; faith; trust:
    Confident in my trust there is no god.

    Sorry, atheism is a belief, which now has developed into communal organizations to share their communities belief there is no god. And to share their goodwill for each other.

    See the Humanist manifesto

    Dawkins' style New Atheism.
    I "believe" that the cosmos is all that is or ever was or ever will be. I believe that no other reality, divine or otherwise, exists. ...
    I believe that human life has no meaning apart from itself....
    I believe that not everything is permissible....
    I believe that by the deployment of human reason and the acquisition of knowledge....
    I believe that the path to individual and collective happiness lies in being educated to reality, and in being thus released from the irresponsible and pernicious illusion of religion, for which there is neither.

    See belief.

  • UtahBlueDevil Alpine, UT
    June 20, 2019 4:05 p.m.

    "Atheism is not a belief." - sure it is. It's a belief that life spontaneously sprung forward from where there was no life, and that same life evolved in diverse and broad life forms, from snails to humans. Not believing in a deity doesn't mean you don't believe something. You can't ignore the fact that "man" exists, and that there is no definitive science based story on how man became what it is today, at least one that can be scientifically reproduced. Atheist believe in something else wise they can't explain themselves.

    The idea that those believe who in a strict interpretation of the separation of state and religion are "communist" just shows how some hyper ventilation and insert politics into everything. There are very real reasons the US wanted to avoid a "state" sponsored religion based off of those peoples memories of what a mess that made of Europe for so long. People died because they didn't adhere to that state religion - branded as heretics. There were very real reasons the founders didn't want that history to follow them here. See what happened to the saints in Illinois when government was used to persecute a faith group.

    Learn your history.

  • majmajor Layton, UT
    June 20, 2019 3:25 p.m.

    The 7 justices were spot-on in their judgment. The other two are just offended by anything that can be linked to religion (specifically Christianity).

    The symbolism of that cross has more to do with the Service Members who died in world war-1, then anything related to Christ.

  • M_Hawke Golden, CO
    June 20, 2019 3:10 p.m.

    The phrase "separation of church and state" was used by Jefferson in response to the Danbury Baptist Association to assure them that the government would NOT interfere with their right to worship. It was meant as a wall to *protect* the church. Just do a search on "Jefferson danbury baptist letters" and you will find it and you can read it in full.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    June 20, 2019 2:57 p.m.

    As for this decision, it is precisely the outcome it should have been. It is not the SCOTUS' charge to justify or magnify the sacred feelings believers' have of religious symbols like the cross. I know some Christians are upset that they "minimized the cross" as a religious symbol, but SCOTUS is charged with being impartial (even if they obviously have political persuasions). If the cross is sacred to you, great...it isn't, and shouldn't be, to SCOTUS.

    As for the establishment clause, government money to maintain a historical monument isn't making a "LAW respecting an establishment of religion"...nor is it an act forcing others to recognize one religion over another. I also liked Thomas' opinion because it addressed so well the establishment clause and how it wasn't violated in this case.

    Thankfully there are enough originalists on the bench that saw this complaint by the AHA for what it was: a petty attempt at using government to force destruction or disrepair of a monument as recompense for merely being offended at the sight of a symbol with any religious implication.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    June 20, 2019 2:47 p.m.

    This has no bearing on my life so I have no opinion on it.

    What I do find interesting though is that fact that the people who are cheering this decision (religious symbol on public land funding by public funds) are the same people who were incredibly upset a while back when an Islamic Mosque was put in New York, on private property with private funds. For several months faux news raged about that and their fans raged online about it.

    Two totally different things, but people are behaving incredibly hypocritically about both issues.

  • Sequoya Stafford, VA
    June 20, 2019 2:44 p.m.

    This goes beyond atheism per se. It is often about "anti theism." "...e.g., not only do I not believe in god, but I find the very notion outrageous; because god allows this or that horrible thing to happen. because the Universe is too messed up for intelligent creation." The problem is; all of this purports to understand God's plan and purposes, and because it makes no sense to the secular mind, it must be false.
    From those who believe, where there is actual experience with a loving father, herein is the "proof" of divine existence. to say otherwise is to claim, I've looked into all time and space and have seen no God.

  • Cougsndawgs West Point , UT
    June 20, 2019 2:09 p.m.

    The Atheist:
    "Proven fact, atheists/non-believers know the scriptures better than believers! Look it up!"

    And?...knowledge about the scriptures doesn't prove or disprove them, or further provide motivation or dissuade one to live by them. I know the Qur'an quite well...does that somehow provide validity or veracity to it's teachings, or further, motivate me or dissuade me to live by it? I'm just curious why you made the above statement...being a non-believer. What did you think to gain?

    And methinks you doth protest too much accusing believers of "hate" and "hypocrisy", when I only read their comments to be a defense of what they believe and challenging you in-kind, with very little, if any, animosity. Why are you so "defensive" about them defending their belief from your challenges? Hmm

    And yes, Atheism is not a belief, it is non-belief...which is the equivalent of "It's not my opinion, it's my non-opinion". Semantics don't trump logic, my friend, and logically non-belief is still a belief because belief is all one has in the absence of verifiable fact. And God not existing isn't any more a verifiable FACT than Him existing...thus we have our beliefs.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    June 20, 2019 2:09 p.m.

    Not surprising ginsburg and sotomayor would be on the wrong side of this argument. Those two would have all the crosses and Stars of David removed from headstones in national cemeteries and from military medals to be consistent with their dissent.

    BSR
    Without the attack that you deny exists, there would have been no need for the court to rule. The fact is 2 jurists continue the attack with their dissent.

    Utah-Hawaii
    We know from many of your comments you do not like Christianity or its practitioners. But your statement about the founders in not true. Go to the old church in Williamsburg, VA and you will see many of the pews were those used by founders. Jefferson was a deacon in his church. Jefferson's April 1823 letter to Adams indicates he was not orthodox, but when he referred to "the God you and I adore" he was not talking about secular humanism.

    since you do not like having someone knock on your door, you are advocating a ban on that religious activity - spreading the good word? you oppose others exercising their 1st amendment rights?

  • Utahnareapeculiarpeople Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:59 p.m.

    "In a concurring opinion, Justice Brett Kavanaugh expressed sympathy for those who are dissatisfied with the outcome, explaining that the case was challenging to decide."

    I have a feeling Justice Kavanaugh will be expressing a lot of such sympathy as he rules over and over again exactly like everyone expects he will.

  • Harrison Bergeron Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:53 p.m.

    “Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor were the only justices to dissent in full…”

    Before reading the body of the article I decided to guess who the 2 dissents were. I knew with certainty one of them was going to be Ginsburg. I guessed the other would be either Sotomayor or Kagan.

    Just this month we had another headline “Justice Ginsburg warns of more 5-4 decisions ahead.” Well, I guess she can reliably predict that if she is going to dissent on a no-brainer like this case. Good grief, this would have probably been unanimous if Ginsburg had retired. There is no way Sotomayor would be alone in a 8-1 decision.

    Ginsburg wrote in her dissent: “As I see it, when a cross is displayed on public property, the government may be presumed to endorse its religious content.”

    Well isn’t that rich. I guess she is too blind to see the Ten Commandments on the SCOTUS chamber doors!

  • Thomas Paine South Jordan, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:35 p.m.

    @Brave Sir Robin

    This case wasn’t about Religious liberty; it was about separation of church and state. These are very different issues.
    In this case, the 7 justices ruled that in this example, government money could fund a cross, while still not supporting a state religion or a religious test to hold office.

  • sharrona layton, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:34 p.m.

    RE: Atheists "Do you believers actually read your scriptures? Proven fact, atheists/non-believers know the scriptures better than believers!"

    Anyone who claims that they are not religious and then makes judgments about religious topics (e.g., the deity of Christ, the existence of God, the morality regarding adultery, the truthfulness of the Bible, and so on) has made a religious statement. Though they may “claim” to be irreligious, they reveal that they are indeed religious when they attempt to refute another religious view.

  • Traveller Farmington, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:29 p.m.

    @Atheist
    Lack of belief in God would be more properly called agnosticism in my book. I view atheism very definitely as a specific belief - a belief that God does not exist.

    An agnostic can say "maybe you're right, maybe you're wrong. Who am I to say?"

    An atheist must say "if you say you believe in God then I believe you are either deluded, ignorant, or insincere."

  • Hockey Fan Miles City, MT
    June 20, 2019 1:22 p.m.

    Symbolism entails a 'signifier' and its corresponding 'signified.' For example, in Austin, TX, the hook'em horns salute is a respectful tribute to the University of Texas-Austin Longhorns. In Norway, the same signifier is an offensive salute to Satan, as the Bush family learned in January 2005. The SCOTUS undertook to make a Constitutional determination on whether the signifier in question should be deemed as an incontrovertibly religious signified that violates the Constitution or as an adequately secular signified that does not violate the Constitution. Of the nine Justices, seven believed it did not violate the Constitution and two Justices opined that it did violate the Constitution. Those with a strong opinion on the matter will not be swayed by those who have a differing opinion. But they appear to be enjoying their argument over who is right and who is wrong. I'll save my breath.

  • Yar Springville, UT
    June 20, 2019 1:16 p.m.

    I'm glad the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the cross. It's freedom of speech in my opinion, even if it is maintained by funds. In fact, if it was a non-Christian religious symbol or even an atheistic symbol for that matter (assuming one exists of course) and I was one of those judges there on the court, I would've voted the same way as the judges did for the cross. Because it's free speech. If you don't like the symbol (Christian or non-Christian), why not just simply ignore it? It's not like we're trying to devalue you or say you're not important, right?

  • Franciscus Canada, 00
    June 20, 2019 12:52 p.m.

    ...pretty sad that the existence of a CROSS requires verification in court...

  • The Atheist Provo, UT
    June 20, 2019 12:48 p.m.

    "Atheists have no problem in making blood libel type comments, when they think they are the only ones who could possibly be right. Appears they are what they claim religious people are. There is only one true belief and it is their own belief."

    Another hateful overreaction and religiously hypocritical comment.

    Atheism is not a belief.

    Period.

    Educate yourselves, believers. You are embarrassing yourselves! (again)

  • PostLimitCapped Rio Rancho, NM
    June 20, 2019 12:40 p.m.

    @Daedalus, Stephen
    "I agree with the outcome, but am skeptical of letting SCOTUS be the arbiter between the sacred and profane."
    The SCOTUS was quite explicitly *not* ruling on whether it was profane or sacred. They, quite explicitly, said that regardless of it's religious connotations, it had enough *other* associations and purposes to remain.

    So you are correct, the SCOTUS should not be deciding whether something is sacred or profane. Because if a case ever hinges on that, we are already lost.

  • AlanSutton Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 12:38 p.m.

    I like Justice Thomas's take on the case. He points out that, unlike the other amendments, the First Amendment begins by telling us what Congress may not do: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . ." Carefully considering the amendment's wording, Justice Thomas wrote that since Congress made no law concerning the monument, it's up to the State of Maryland to decide for itself whether it should stand, without the federal government getting in the way. That's called "not reading into the Constitution what is not there."

  • THEREALND Mishawaka, IN
    June 20, 2019 12:22 p.m.

    "Alito argued that the cross had essentially become secular. He invoked the history of World War I memorials noting the rows and rows of crosses and stars of David at cemeteries that memorialized those who died in that war and that established in people's minds, in his view, that that was a way to honor to dead."

    "Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in dissent, disagreed with Alito's history. She noted that it's clear what the purpose and meaning of the cross was from the start — it was religious. She argued Americans knew what it meant then and know what it means now."

    I highly doubt that any Jew would ever take a position under any circumstance that any presentation of the "Star of David" was secular. The same with Muslims and the Star and Cresent. Or how about Latter-day Saints? Under what circumstance would they ever take the position that the Angel Moroni was a secular symbol?

  • Daedalus, Stephen Arvada, CO
    June 20, 2019 12:01 p.m.

    I agree with the outcome, but am skeptical of letting SCOTUS be the arbiter between the sacred and profane.

    The 7-2 majority was cobbled together solely by the Court's determination that this particular use of the cross symbol no longer held sufficient sacred connotations to rise to the level of a religious expression (which in turn allowed SCOTUS to side-step the question of whether or not a religion was improperly endorsed by the local government).

    The Court even analogized the cross symbol in this case to various corporate and nonprofit logos that re-purposed the Christian cross into banal, secular logos -- even when those design elements could be traced back to religious origins.

    To remain spiritually relevant, religions must maintain the sacredness of their own symbols. That is not the government's job.

    Thus it seems awkward if not improper -- as a matter of governance and religion -- for SCOTUS to evaluate and decide if, when, and how a such common religious symbol remains sacred "enough".

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 20, 2019 11:59 a.m.

    Wow, common sense actually won in our legal system.
    Who da thunk it was possible?

  • The Atheist Provo, UT
    June 20, 2019 12:00 p.m.

    Someone who calls itself "PorLibertad" protests too much, methinks, stridently asserting:

    "You would attempt to define our moral conscience as 'bigotry and discrimination' and other nonsensical terms. They are not the same at all - not even close."

    I never said they were. If you do not engage in "bigotry and discrimination" in the name of religion, then I wasn't talking about (much less "to") you. Why so defensive? Feeling guilty? Hmmm.

    And this is the reaction of believers: spewing hatred against non-believers, overreacting, shouting down those who do not share your beliefs, all in the name of religion...?

    The hypocrisy of religion is evident day after day in these comments as the most passionate defenders of religion (and religious freedom) repeatedly violate their own religion's teachings about "love thy enemies" and "agree with thine adversary while thou art in the way with him", etc.

    Do you believers actually read your scriptures? Proven fact, atheists/non-believers know the scriptures better than believers! Look it up!

  • shamrock Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 11:52 a.m.

    The tortured "logic" of this decision about the cross reminds me of the Court's 1974 opinion in Geduldig v. Aiello, which held that pregnancy was not a gender-related condition. In that case, the Court stated: "The California insurance program does not exclude anyone from benefit eligibility because of gender but merely removes one physical condition - pregnancy .... While it is true that only women can become pregnant, it does not follow that every legislative classification concerning pregnancy is a sex-based classification."

    Just as nine men somehow convinced themselves that pregnancy isn't really gender-related, we now have five Christians and two Jews holding that a government-funded cross doesn't really involve government endorsement of religion. Could have fooled me. I also predict this decision will open a messy can of worms for believers. If a cross or Star of David is not significantly or exclusively "religious," it might ultimately be seen as not particularly entitled to respect or First Amendment protection, either, and I'm not convinced that's a good path for us to take.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    June 20, 2019 11:47 a.m.

    Anti-Religion (atheists) lacks credibility, as do those who try to justify bigotry, discrimination, arrogance, and condemnation of believers in the name of atheism.

    "I don't believe in any of the preposterous manmade religions, or ever considered Christian dogma, tyranny and hate towards all"

    "Chalk up a win for supernaturalists"

    "goes along with the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus. I never get offended by anyone's beliefs... pester you by knocking on your door selling their "religious snake oil".......that is a whole other deal and should be banned!"

    Yes atheists are not bigoted, judgmental, derogatory or bigoted toward those of faith. Atheists have no problem in making blood libel type comments, when they think they are the only ones who could possibly be right. Appears they are what they claim religious people are. There is only one true belief and it is their own belief.

  • PorLibertad Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 11:29 a.m.

    Some dude who calls himself "The Atheist" made this discreditable comment: "Implicit in this decision is the idea that the cross is not a religious symbol. That is a good sign, consistent with the fact that religion and its significance is being lost and diluted in civil society. Religion lacks credibility, as do those who try to justify bigotry, discrimination, arrogance, and condemnation of non-believers in the name of religion".

    Wrong "Athesist", God has taught mankind to discern between good and bad and right and wrong.

    You would attempt to define our moral conscience as "bigotry and discrimination" and other nonsensical terms. They are not the same at all - not even close.

    Religious faith brings hope and light into a decaying world and we of faith derive great power and energy from that light that God provides for us. Have no fear friend, the truth can make you free, but you must embrace truth and light for that to happen.

  • Chummley MISSION VIEJO, CA
    June 20, 2019 11:26 a.m.

    With so many things to do and so many real problems it amazes me that the "Humanist" Society spends its time and money on an old WW1 monument.

    People went off and died to preserve this way of life. The people that knew them best built a monument to their sacrifice - they choose a cross, a relevant symbol of the time. The "Humanists" and other offended folks still have a wonderful choice - they can look at it as a symbol of religion and all they despise - or they can look at it as a symbol of sacrifice by those who died a long time ago in far off places away from their families and loved ones.

    I am sorry the memorial dedicated to their death offends you.....Would it not be better if you just toughen up a little bit and got a little insight into the past as opposed to your need to destroy it and thereby alter the future?

    Maybe it would have been better to just drive by the memorial and say thank you for your service an we will never forget that you did what none of us did - die for each and everyone of us in a fight for liberty.

  • There You Go Again St George, UT
    June 20, 2019 11:00 a.m.

    I'm all in for Memorializing the efforts of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for my country.

    The Memorial cost money to build as well as maintain...again, no problem.

    Those who equate this decision as a win/loss for some political cartel are completely missing the point.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:56 a.m.

    @J Smith
    You are partially right in saying that early Americans were trying to remain non-denominational, and "deist". But they were trying to avoid sectarian conflicts between Amish, Quakers, Presbyterians, Methodists, Roman Catholics, etc.. All basically "Christian". There is simply no question that early America was predominantly a 'Christian' nation. The number of Buddhists, Muslims, and other religions was immeasurably low (And many, if not most, Buddhists consider themselves atheists, anyway). There is simply no credible way to deny that America is founded upon Christian morality, values, traditions, and principles, even if the government is officially "secular".

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:41 a.m.

    Religion is good for people, it makes the hardships and oppressions of this life bearable.

    Religion is good for the masters, it makes the job of controlling the people easy and least costly.

  • J. Smith Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:29 a.m.

    Everywhere you look in what our founding fathers wrote about religion in this new country they formed, it is evident that while they had a belief in God, they did not have Christianity as the religion of prominence. They knew that any time you merge government and religion it leads to “bigotry and superstition.” All one has to do is look at any country that has merged the two and what you will see is intolerance and lost freedoms. Then look at countries where they are, by law, separate and you will see freedom.

    This country was not founded as a Christian nation. It was founded on a belief in God. That god is the same god for Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Christians, Buddhists, and any other god you want to “worship according to the dictates of his own heart.” So says George Washington. And all you have to do is to look it up to verify it.

    "In this enlightened Age and in this Land of equal liberty it is our boast, that a man’s religious tenets will not forfeit the protection of the Laws, nor deprive him of the right of attaining and holding the highest Offices that are known in the United States.” – George Washington

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:18 a.m.

    I support freedom of religion. I support earthly governments not establishing state religions.

    Those who brought this suit, and those who have supported their animosity, bigotry, hatred, disrespect, and animus towards all things however remotely connected to religion have damaged their credibility.

    To any sensible, respectful person--regardless of personal beliefs or affiliations, or lack thereof--this case never had anything to do with government establishing religion, imposing religion on others, nor attacking anyone's rights to belief or practice or not, as the individual sees fit. A World War I Memorial in the shape of a cross has about as much Christian significance as do memorials in the shape of obelisks with worshiping the sun god Ra.

    Those who attack this memorial demonstrate animus toward all things remotely religious. And by so doing, they damage their credibility when there are real cases of govt improperly establishing or promoting religion or one religion over others. The boy who cried wolf.

    The AHA can never be trusted to properly assess whether govt is actually violating the 1st amd. They have proven their judgement is not sound.

  • Bloodhound Provo, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:12 a.m.

    @Utah-Hawaii Alum - CA, 00

    I respectfully disagree that our founders were not Christians. Some were Christians, some were Deists, and some were non-traditional Christians. None were atheists. The overwhelming majority believed religion was important to the health of our republic. I am not aware of any of the founders who disagreed with basic Christian morals, even when they failed to live up to the moral code laid out in the Ten Commandments and the New Testament.

  • Traveller Farmington, UT
    June 20, 2019 10:11 a.m.

    Justice Thomas' opinion, in which he concurs with the judgement but not the reasoning of it is once again the most correct view of the case. Basically, he says that setting up a religious monument doesn't involve any actual legal religious coercion and therefore it can't be viewed as an "establishment of religion", even if some of your tax dollars are being spent to maintain it. A monument doesn't make any attempt to change anyone's beliefs or coerce you into a specific doctrine. "The Bladensburg Cross is constitutional even though the cross has religious significance as a central symbol of Christianity."

    That's a much more sensible argument than the "this specific cross has non-religious significance" idea used in the main court opinion.

  • Utah-Hawaii Alum CA, 00
    June 20, 2019 9:58 a.m.

    It seems to me, after reading some of these "victory" comments, that some folks are under the misimpression that the USA is a "Christian" country???? Well, that is simply untrue. Our founding fathers were NOT Christians. Our country was founded on "basic fundamental laws of humanity in general," in a TOTALLY secular format and meaning. Tradition by symbolism prevailed with this SCOTUS decision, not Christian dogma in any way, shape or form.

  • THEREALND Mishawaka, IN
    June 20, 2019 9:56 a.m.

    @Flipphone

    "It is Sad that displaying a Christian cross had to be defended by the Supreme Court."

    And even more sad that they chose to do so by downplaying and eliminating the religious symbolism. This is a representation of what Christians believe their savior died on that now has no religious significance. Truly a sad day for Christians.

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:43 a.m.

    PostLimitCapped - "But if you start slapping new 10 Commandment statues on things, that's a quite different matter."

    Of course it is quite a different matter; for the very context that the Supreme Court is ruling on here. The entire purpose of those trying to remove the cross; was to attack religion (that became clear with their answers to the court's inquiries). In essence to attack religion via the courts; they are attacking anything that could be seen as being religious and in the public square even when it clearly isn't religious. The Supreme Court is recognizing this as an attack.

    They would also clearly recognize if someone starting slapping new 10 Commandment statues on things as being a clear push back to those attacking the religious; and equally in the wrong; as it would put the government in the position of having to support a specific religion and thus violate the constitution. (Or as was taught in childhood, two wrongs don't make a right.)

    In essence it isn't the symbol itself; it is the purpose of the symbol (and equally the purpose of the lawsuit) that the Supreme Court is ruling on here.

  • Flipphone , 00
    June 20, 2019 9:40 a.m.

    It is Sad that displaying a Christian cross had to be defended by the Supreme Court.

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:33 a.m.

    @Thomas Thompson,

    I began reading your post; and you were essentially saying the exact thing I wanted to say... up until they point of saying "...or it is nothing. The Supreme Court has apparently adopted the latter view."

    I don't read that at all; seems to me the court is adopting the previous view; that Christians (or "believers,") find the cross as a symbol of the ultimate sacrifice; and therefore that is why altering or removing the cross now (while having surpassed a strictly religious meaning) would actually become an attack on the Christian religion which goes against the 1st Amendment (which ensures the government will not interfere with other's religions).

    But, I definitely agree that the cross is more than just a Christian symbol (I would reference another well known symbol that radically changed meanings, but would be blocked). The cross has for many centuries been a symbol of memorial of those who have died (often by violent means such as in combat at war) and not religious at all. And this specific memorial then being specifically ONLY to remember war casualties, is found to not be religious; and therefore not an "establishment" on the part of the government.

  • Flipphone , 00
    June 20, 2019 9:34 a.m.

    A big win for America.

  • Bountiful Guy Bountiful, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:31 a.m.

    This is a wonderful decision, and I'm surprised that a couple of liberal judges ruled in favor of the common sense. I love what one commenter wrote above when he said,

    "And it shouldn't matter whether it's a cross, Star of David, Buddha, Star and Crescent, or any other symbol of religious belief."

    I would add that if there's an appropriate symbol for non-religious belief, it can also honor good people in their good works without "establishing a religion" by government. I am never offended by any of these symbols. Of course, symbols that advocate hatred, slavery, and killing would not be something I would like to see.

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:20 a.m.

    @Brave Sir Robin: "I thought our religious liberties were under attack? Seems like they're being pretty well defended..."

    What defense is needed unless there is an attack? Your observation of good defense, proves the attack.

    In this case, it was not religious liberties under attack as this cross has little or no religious significance and certainly is not part of anyone's worship. It was our culture that was under attack, motivated by a hatred of all hints of religion.

    I oppose imposition of religion by law, or requiring anyone to financially support another man's religion (whether traditional or anti-theist), or bow to another's god.

    Sensible men recognize the great good religion, religious teachings, and religious beliefs serve in our free society. We do not have nor want a government powerful enough to enforce all needful laws on a population disinclined to voluntarily live decent lives. Religion plays a vital role in teaching decency, providing charity, and assisting with humanitarian and disaster relief.

    Not establishing a state church does not require nor permit govt to be hostile to religion. We should not attempt to erase history, nor push religion out of sight.

  • Thomas Thompson Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:12 a.m.

    I incline to the view that this case was rightly decided, but -- essentially -- the basis for the Court's decision is that the cross is no longer a purely Christian symbol, and instead represents many other things that are permissible expressions of speech and not so much an "establishment of religion." To believers, however, the Cross is valued either the ultimate symbol of the sacrifice that was made for them by God himself -- or it is nothing. The Supreme Court has apparently adopted the latter view, and this may be as a practical matter correct in the world we live in now, but it diminishes, in my view, the whole concept of religious value. To whatever extent the ruling was intended to do that, it's unfortunate.

  • THEREALND Mishawaka, IN
    June 20, 2019 9:10 a.m.

    So now it can fall down by natural causes.

  • one old man MSC, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:08 a.m.

    Good.

    And it shouldn't matter whether it's a cross, Star of David, Buddha, Star and Crescent, or any other symbol of religious belief.

    It's called Respecting One Another.

    Unfortunately, too many religions and other groups insist that their way is the ONLY way.

    "We are the only true church."

    "God speaks only to US."

    "Our God is the only God."

    When we fail to respect others, we sow seeds of war.

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 20, 2019 9:05 a.m.

    The major problem with this ruling is that it wasn't 9-0. Here are the major points, many of which were argued by supporters in these very comments over the past several months:

    1-retaining established, religiously expressive monuments, ...is quite different from erecting ...new ones.

    2-...closely linked to World War I. The United States adopted it as part of its military honors, establishing the Distinguished Service Cross and the Navy Cross... as World War I monuments have endured through the years ....requiring their removal or alteration would not be viewed ...as a neutral act. ...California is [not] attempting to convey a religious message by retaining ...names, like Los Angeles and San Diego, ...but...if the State undertook to change those names.

    3-The image of the .... cross ...became a symbol of their sacrifice, and the design of the Bladensburg Cross must be understood in light of that background. That the cross originated as a Christian symbol ...does not change the fact that the symbol took on an added secular meaning....

    4-... cross is undoubtedly a Christian symbol should not blind one to everything else that the Bladensburg Cross has come to represent

  • Bloodhound Provo, UT
    June 20, 2019 8:55 a.m.

    When celebrating the news, my wife asked me, "Which justices do you think voted against the decision?" I immediately responded, "Probably Ginsburg and Sotomayor." I did some digging and sure enough I was right. On the other hand, hats off to First Liberty Institute for defending the Cross and to the justices who ruled in its favor.

  • The Great Helmsman Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 8:48 a.m.

    Chalk up a win for supernaturalists.

  • bamafone Salem, UT
    June 20, 2019 8:45 a.m.

    7-2, that’s not even close.

  • Billy Bob Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2019 8:44 a.m.

    Good ruling! Glad to see common sense in the Supreme Court.

    Of course it was Ginsberg and Sotomayor dissenting. They are by far the two most leftist and politically motivated members of the Supreme Court. Kagan and Breyer are liberal, but at least they are able to see past politics occasionally and vote correctly, as was the case here.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    June 20, 2019 8:42 a.m.

    But wait...I thought our religious liberties were under attack? Seems like they're being pretty well defended to me...

  • PostLimitCapped Rio Rancho, NM
    June 20, 2019 8:34 a.m.

    From the ruling, page 2:
    "At least four considerations show that retaining established, religiously expressive monuments, symbols, and practices is quite different from erecting or adopting new ones. "
    So sure. SCOTUS allows *this* one to remain. But if you start slapping new 10 Commandment statues on things, that's a quite different matter.