The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that could allow local governments to display religious iconography on public property.
The case — a consolidation of American Legion v. American Humanist Association and Maryland-National Capital Park v. American Humanist Association — revolves around a memorial to World War I soldiers. The memorial features a 40-foot tall cross, and was erected on public property in Bladenberg, Maryland.
A federal appeals court showed that the “Peace Cross” memorial violates the Constitution’s ban regarding “respecting an establishment of religion” under the First Amendment, but it is likely that the new Supreme Court, with a five person conservative majority, will reverse the lower court’s ruling.
The issue of religious imagery on public lands had appeared settled in the 1980s, after County of Allegheny v. ACLU. In that ruling, Justice Harry Blackmun wrote that the United States Constitution, “prohibits government from appearing to take a position on questions of religious belief or from ‘making adherence to a religion relevant in any way to a person’s standing in the political community.’”
This ruling did allow some leeway, including images of Muhammad or Moses, due to their connections with the law, but did not allow for other religious symbols.
This test has also been at the heart of fights over displays of the Ten Commandments and if such a display is that of a legal document or a religious one.
A Supreme Court reversal could lead to additional religious imagery at city halls, courthouse, schools and other institutions, and open the door to future challenges over school prayer and other changes sought by American evangelicals.
It will also signal future challenges with a religious bent, including potential “religious freedom” cases that can limit LGBTQ and other civil rights.
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
Watergate Lawyer Explains Why Biden Has No Choice but to Prosecute Trump
The last thing that President-elect Joe Biden wants to do is be inundated by crimes committed by the previous administration. Biden is a “worker,” looking forward toward a future that repairs relationships with the international community, fixes regulations, revives government agencies and, hopefully, bring public servants back to fill positions. There’s just one problem, however, Donald Trump.
Writing in the Washington Post on Tuesday, Philip Allen Lacovara, a former counselor to the Watergate special prosecutor, explained that Biden may not have any options. It’s a sentiment, Andrew Weissmann, former senior attorney to special counsel Robert Mueller, agrees must happen.
In the case of former President Barack Obama, he was facing the worst economic recession since the Great Depression. Prosecuting former President George W. Bush, Gina Haspel and others for the violent torture conducted on prisoners of war wasn’t a priority. In the case of former President Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford said he hoped to end the “long national nightmare” that was the Watergate scandal. Weissmann argued Biden has no other option but to uphold the power of the special counsel. Lacovara agreed, saying Biden shouldn’t repeat the same mistakes as previous presidents.
“Biden and some of his advisers may believe that the best way to close the book on the Trump presidency, with all of its corruption, abuse and mendacity, is simply to forget the past four years,” wrote Lacovara. “In virtually any other presidential succession, this course might be prudent and consistent with our history of peaceful transitions without recrimination, vindictiveness or rummaging around for criminality.”
Trump is in a category by himself. “One need not embark on a malicious hunt to identify serious criminal abuses by Trump and many of his closest aides,” said Lacovara, explaining that the conduct by him and his administration showed a pattern of disregard for public order, “including those embedded in federal criminal statutes.”
In Watergate, a special prosecutor was appointed because “no person is above the law,” even a president. With Nixon, the interview with David Frost revealed the former president’s attitude was “when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”
GSA Releases Funds to Biden as ‘Likely’ Winner of 2020 Presidential Election – 16 Days After Race Called
The General Services Administration administrator Emily Murphy has just sent the Biden transition team a letter releasing congressionally-approved funds as the likely winner of the 2020 presidential election, CNN reports.
Murphy has been hammered for personally blocking the transition team’s access to millions of dollars in federal funds and access to executive branch agencies to move the transition forward.
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.
‘Fox & Friends’ Host Brian Kilmeade Goes Apoplectic Over Biden’s Foreign Policy – Gets Smacked Down by His Co-Host
Brian Kilmeade is not having a good day.
The 56-year old “Fox & Friends” co-host went apoplectic during a discussion of Joe Biden’s foreign policy on Monday, and was clearly furious that the President-elect will put America on a dramatically different course in the world.
Joe Biden of course is a foreign policy expert. He served for decades on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and as its chairman, twice.
In a nearly 90-second rant Kilmeade exploded, detailing all the reasons he disagrees with Biden. Among them: “he will rejoin the nuclear the Iran nuclear arms deal,” the “Paris Climate deal,” and the World Health Organization, while scrapping “America First.”
At the end of his maniacal monologue, his co-host Steve Doocy smacked down Kilmeade by summing it all up for him: “Well, that’s what happens when a new administration comes in.”
Brian Kilmeade is hysterically mad that Biden’s foreign policy will be somewhat different from Trump, including rejoining the WHO, and that China’s Global Times printed an article calling for US-China cooperation on the virus. He’s just so mad pic.twitter.com/HSGsw1biJn
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) November 23, 2020
- 'DODGY DEALS'3 days ago
Is a Conservative Coffee Company Supporting “Kenosha Killer” Kyle Rittenhouse?
- THIS IS WHAT DISENFRANCHISEMENT LOOKS LIKE2 days ago
Michigan Republican Who Met With Trump Pushes ‘Constitutional Crisis’ to Overturn Election on Fox News
- News3 days ago
COVID Knocks Kelly Loeffler Off the Campaign Trail After Mike Pence Events — 45 Days Before Georgia Runoff: Report
- BOWING DOWN TO PUTIN1 day ago
‘Salting the Earth’: Trump Quits Treaty Allowing US to Fly Reconnaissance Missions Over Russia – Will Destroy Planes
- CHUCK TODD2 days ago
Calls Grow to Fire Chuck Todd for ‘Malfeasance of Journalism’ After Allowing Republican to Push Pro-Trump Falsehoods
- THE LAW IS CLEAR EMILY23 hours ago
Katie Porter Did Not Question Emily Murphy Because the GSA Head Blew Off Today’s Biden Transition Briefing
- 'CAN'T WE END THIS ALREADY?'3 days ago
Georgia GOP Protestors Scream “Traitors” and “Death to Tyrants” While Demanding Trump Win Election
- COWARDS1 day ago
Carl Bernstein Names Names — Lists 21 GOP Senators Who Secretly Hate Trump but Won’t Say So Publicly