Battle over crosses ensues in Badger State

Friday, June 16, 2017
 | 
Charlie Butts (OneNewsNow.com)

no crossA religious freedom group is encouraging a Wisconsin community not to cave to complaints about signs on public property that have a cross.

The atheist Freedom From Religion Foundation has sent a letter to Oconomowoc, Wisconsin – located about 30 miles west of Milwaukee – complaining it is violating the Constitution with the two signs that display the message: "The Churches of Oconomowoc Welcome You."

The signs – stone structures with crosses on top – were erected over 60 years ago by civic organizations who footed the bill. There had been no complaints about the signs or crosses until FFRF noticed them.

Rick Esenberg is president and general counsel of the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty.

Esenberg

"My organization sent a letter to the city saying Look, we don't think that you have to take these signs down – because in our view the United States Supreme Court has never said that the Establishment Clause mandates freedom from religion [or] that it mandates the removal of any reference to religion from the public square," he states.

Esenberg says if one believes the government should not favor a religion over another, or favor religion over irreligion, then:

"What message would be sent by requiring Oconomowoc to take down a very innocuous sign, which is not expressly associated with the city, to which no one has taken offense for 64 years? What message would that send?" he wonders.

Such a response to the complaint, says the attorney, could be interpreted as forcing the city to express hostility to religion – which government isn't supposed to do.

FFRF has responded to the letter, arguing that the crosses on the signs send a distinctly "Christian message" and that such displays on government property are "divisive, unnecessary and constitutionally problematic."

Like Esenberg's group, FFRF is also based in Wisconsin.

Consider Supporting Us?

The staff at Onenewsnow.com strives daily to bring you news from a biblical perspective. If you benefit from this platform and want others to know about it please consider a generous gift today.

MAKE A DONATION

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

Grade the mainstream media on its treatment of the events that took place in Charlottesville, VA

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

Suspect in killings of 2 Fla. officers arrested at bar
'Free speech rally' cut short after massive counterprotest
Colleges grappling with balancing free speech, campus safety
Duke Univ. removes damaged Robert E. Lee statue
MLB umpires wear wristbands to protest 'abusive' treatment
Trump's new communications director isn't new to his ways
1 police officer killed, 3 injured in 2 shootings in Fla.
Spain, France press manhunt for ringleader in dual attacks
Latest: Finland: Turku knife attack is likely terror act

LATEST FROM THE WEB

Boston strong? Antifa thugs assault flag-waving woman
Trump thanks Boston police for handling protesters
Long lost USS Indianapolis wreckage discovered by Paul Allen crew
Bannon's security clearance may cause media issues
Trump thanks Bannon for his 'service'

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day

REASON & COMPANY

NEXT STORY
Rainbow flag OK, but national motto crosses the line

Houston police cruiser with rainbow decalsGovernment agencies, including police departments, have raised a question during "gay pride" month that a constitutional attorney suggests ought to be answered.