The cross at a crossroads


Peace Cross
Five miles from U.S. Supreme Court in suburban Maryland stands the 40 foot tall "Peace Cross," a World War I memorial located on a small plot of land in the middle of a major three-way intersection. It is viewed by many thousands of visitors and passing drivers every day.
 
As reported on Christian NewsWire, the "Peace Cross" was built in 1925 as a tribute to local men who died during World War I. The Gold-Star Mothers who designed the memorial in 1919 chose the shape to recall the crosses marking the countless American graves on the Western Front of that war. It was paid for by local families and businesses. It stands on a piece of land that has been owned since 1961 by a state commission.
 

+ + The cross at a crossroads...
 
The fate of the cross is about to be determined by the Supreme Court following a 2014 lawsuit filed by the American Humanist Association against Maryland officials. The lawsuit argues that the cross "discriminates against patriotic soldiers who are not Christian." The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals previously ruled that the cross violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Now, the High Court will decide the case.
 
Liberty Counsel filed an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the 93-year-old 40-foot war memorial.
 
+ + The "Lemon Test" is a legal lemon...
 
Liberty Counsel is arguing that the Supreme Court should reject its longstanding test known as the "Lemon Test," used to determine if a law violates the First Amendment. Its name comes from Lemon v. Kurtzman, in which the Court ruled that a Rhode Island law that paid some of the salary of some parochial school teachers was unconstitutional. This test has proven to be unworkable and has led to inconsistent and contradictory decisions on the constitutionality of 10 Commandment monuments and cross monuments like the "Peace Cross."

The "Lemon Test" should be replaced with an objective test that would yield clear and consistent results. The new test would analyze displays based upon history, whether the symbol is ubiquitous and whether the display is coercive, i.e., is actively trying to proselytize or push a particular religious belief.

We are hopeful that the High Court will finally overturn this unconstitutional precedent on the Establishment Clause as a result of this "Peace Cross" case. In 2005, the Court decided two Ten Commandment cases on the same day, using the 'Lemon Test' in one case and no test in the other case. It is past time the Court return to the Constitution and abandon unworkable, manmade tests.

+ + Help save the cross!

Liberty Counsel's legal team recently put the final touches on our amicus brief in order to meet the High Court's deadline. Please help us with your prayer and financial support as we help defend the "Peace Cross" and others from unreasonable attacks.


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Once again, this critical case being decided by the Supreme Court will set a precedent for the many other lawsuits against crosses, the Ten Commandments, or other "symbols" deemed by the ACLU, atheist organizations and secularists to be religious in nature. And what will become of the hundreds of thousands of other crosses used to commemorate the lives and/or burial places of veterans?

Please help as you're able.
 
Thank you and God bless you!
 
Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman
Liberty Counsel