Since 1913, a cross has stood as the centerpiece of the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial in San Diego, surrounded by nearly 3,000 granite plaques, individually honoring war heroes from every American war, from the Revolutionary War to Iraq and Afghanistan.
The structure is a 29-foot Latin cross, which was erected in 1954. For much of this time, it was in a city park in the La Jolla neighborhood of San Diego. Then, in 1989, the ACLU filed a lawsuit, arguing that allowing a cross on government land violates the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. This memorial has been embroiled in litigation ever since.
In 2004, Congress passed a law making this city-owned display a “national memorial honoring veterans of the United States Armed Forces,” dedicated as a tribute to those service members “who sacrificed their lives in the defense of the United States.” Congress officially found that the “patriotic and inspirational symbolism of the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial provides solace to the families and comrades of the veterans it memorializes.” Although the Latin cross is identifiably a Christian symbol, Congress noted that the memorial is also “replete with secular symbols” and symbols of other faiths, such as 18 Stars of David. In this pluralistic context, the cross plays the role of commemorating veterans’ service and death.
That law sparked the latest round of litigation in federal court. In 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed its prior decision on this display, holding that because of the cross, the memorial “primarily conveys a message of endorsement of religion.” Specifically, it “projects a government endorsement of Christianity.”
The United States Supreme Court denied review in 2012 but sent a written message noting that the lower courts were still considering whether the memorial could be modified in a way that preserves its character. In a statement by Justice Samuel Alito, the Court signaled that it would seriously consider taking the case if these additional efforts did not produce a positive outcome.
After almost two years of additional proceedings, on Dec. 12 the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California reluctantly held that under controlling precedent from the Ninth Circuit, the district judge still had no choice but to declare the cross an endorsement of Christianity. He has ordered it removed within 90 days.
Judge Larry Alan Burns read the order from the bench in court and appeared to choke up as he ordered the memorial’s destruction, observers told Breitbart News. Burns then issued a stay of his decision to give the memorial cross’s lawyers time to appeal back to the Ninth Circuit and, if necessary, the U.S. Supreme Court.
Originally, the U.S. Justice Department defended the cross memorial. However, when President Barack Obama was elected, the government’s defense of the memorial under Attorney General Eric Holder seemed to become lackluster, and the Mount Soledad Veterans Memorial Association stepped in to bolster the defense. They are represented by Allyson Ho, a partner at the powerhouse firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius (Ted Cruz was a partner at that firm prior to his Senate election, and in fact Cruz and Ho were the co-chairs of the firm’s Supreme Court practice group), and Jeff Mateer and Hiram Sasser from Liberty Institute, one of America’s foremost religious-liberty law firms.
Hiram Sasser tells Breitbart News, “We will continue to fight for this memorial and the selfless sacrifice and service of all the millions of veterans it represents; it is the least we can do for those who gave so much to us all.”
Ken Klukowski is senior legal analyst for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.
Thank you for posting this one Harry, I also posted one on this same story, but this one covers much more details that I did not have. I think that after all these years of trying to fend off these attacks on our Christian liberties and faith, it is now time that we resolve to fight back and protect this monument. The ACLU was started specifically for the purposes of eliminating all signs of Christianity in America. The founder of the ACLU was a devout Communist and an atheist. Somehow this group has managed to use federal money to wage their war against America and Christianity. Congress and the Supreme Court have refused to stop them on the grounds of freedom of speech and liberty. In other words they use our own laws to fight against those very same principals of freedom and liberty. This monument and several others around the country are either currently under attack or have already been destroyed. It is time to put and end to this tyranny. This cross and this monument should be the line in the sand for every Christian or Military veteran in the country.
The real truth to all of this is that there is NO SUCH THING AS A SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE. The Constitution only says that the Government cannot declare or demand that everyone shall practice any specific religion or religious beliefs. It does NOT ban the Government or the people from practicing any religion. The men and women laid to rest below that cross fought and died to protect those freedoms and liberties. It is time for the rest of us to stand up and defend them and that monument.
Let the war begin.
TAKE DOWN THE CROSS & PUT UP A MOSQUE ( WE SURRENDER ) +++++++ THE NEW AMERICAN ++++++ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
You maybe surrendering, but I am NOT....get some grit, Bill and let the balls, brass up a little. The fight will be here very soon....The Demorats are itching for a fight and so are the Rino's who are TRAITORS Under this TYRANNICAL GOVERNMENT.... SOON................................................NOT SOON ENOUGH, BUT SOON !!!
ALL WE DO IS TALK ABOUT WHAT WE ARE GOING TO DO, AND NOTHING GETS DONE, WE TALK ABOUT CONGRESS, SENATE, PELOSI, REID & OBAMA, YET ALL WE DO IS TALK, CONGRESS WILL DO NOTHING JUST LIKE THEY BEEN TALKING FOR 5 YRS...........EVERYBODY IS WAITING TILL THE NEXT ELECTION, WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO WHEN ELECTION TIME COMES AND WE ARE NOT ALLOWED TO VOTE? THEY WAY I LOOK AT THIS IS THE OLD SAYING
.............................OBAMA IS A KEEPER.................THEN WE WILL TALK ABOUT THIS , IF WE CAN........
GOD BLESS ALL, GOD BLESS ALL THAT STAND UP..............
My heart is sick!!
We need to shut down the commi ACLU I call them the American Communists liberal Union
the memorial is to the vets and their families. Did any of them protest? Why does the ACLU feel it is up to them to tell us what should be there? I think the ACLU has become the Arab civil liberties union. It sure isn't for most Americans now
How long have we had a written Constitution?Seems it was understood by the Courts a lot better before FDR changed the Court majority with his appointments? The history of the First Congress June-Sept 25,1789 -- the Commentaries on the Constitution by Justice Joseph Story,1833-1859; the Reports of committees 19 Jan.1853 US Senate Judiciary Committee,Mr.Badger--corresponding US House Judiciary Committee Report,Mr.Meacham 27 March,1854 precedents of History that Every Judge in Every State ought be held accountable to. There is NO excuse for Legal shorthand--Metaphysical refinements-- the Tests constructed by the Court to Beguile and Mislead the Lemon Test-- the Endorsement Test--None of it ought have priority over the US Constitution. Either we have a Constitution and it means what it did when it was adopted as the supreme Court published in 1905 South Carolina v.the United States.Justice David Brewer for the Court. Or we have the very kind of misbehavior manifest by this Federal judge. I fault the US supreme Court for NOT resolving this in 2012 --or before. But they refuse to support the Constitution.IT is up to the People to demand the Constitution --not modern Myth -nor"progressive" political power be upheld as supreme Law of the Land.
We must get our country back. And when we do - we have to protect our Constitution from the liberals - who are nothing more than communists, atheists, Islamists and/or idiots. We have to brand them for what they are. We have to try the traitors for treason (those in the White House, Congress, etc.) People who are terrible unhappy with our freedoms need to be shipped out of Dodge - to some 3rd world country where - since the seem to like everything that this Dictator is doing to our country - they should love it.
All the RINOs need to be thrown out of office. No more Dept of Ed, Dept of Agriculture, Dept of Interior, NLRB, DHS, EPA, IRS (we can go with a flat or fair tax), and that's just a start. Term limits, vetting of our would-be representatives who if - once in office - they don't do as they promised us while campaigning, they must be recalled.
I'm so angry at the monumental frack-up in our "ruling class" that I could .... spit!
You forgot one other very important three:
Every person running for elected Office must be Natural Born Citizens of this country. No Marxist, Communist, etc in our elected offices, Period.
and Second everyone must pass at the minimum a Military Style "Secret Clearance", in order to get in office, if they can't pass they don't get into office.
No more Czars, Directors of Departments must be confirmed by Congress and not by the "Nuclear Option". The senate is suppose to be a "Deliberative Body", not a rubber stamp to the White House.
The First Amendment states - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"
The judges in this case have proclaimed an injustice where there is none because the Soledad Cross does not reflect any Congressional law or Prohibition.
The judges therefore have issued an unconstitutional ruling because the Soledad Cross is not a Congressional Law or managed as a symbol of any Congressional Law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.
The court is overstepping its jurisdiction in this case because no law exists regarding religion in this case. The existence of the Soledad Cross is not an endorsement of Christianity, but a symbol of respect for the brave military members that gave all for the nation.
With respect for these individuals, the Congress should transfer ownership of this Memorial to a local church group who will then be supported by congressional funds allocated to care and maintain the resting place of the nations patriots.
If the nation can give away welfare money to illegals then we surely can afford to do this for our patriots.