Bladensburg Peace Cross the latest target of Humanists

 
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Bladensburg Peace Cross the latest target of Humanists

The Humanists are at it again, this time offended by a peace cross that has stood in its current location since 1925.  Fox DC reports:

DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

The emblem in the middle of the cross is actually the American Legion emblem.  We're the ones who actually put it up.  And there were a few reports in the news that quoted local legionnaires.  From the Hyattsville Newspaper:

According to Dane Weber, club manager at the Colmar Manor American Legion, the cross was maintained by a Hyattsville American Legion post until 1957 when the Prince George's County Circuit Court transferred it to the state of Maryland, which then handed it off to the M-NCPPC to administer. 

Weber has lived just about all of his life in Colmar Manor, except for his service in Vietnam. He served as a door gunner on Army helicopters between 1967 and and 1969. During that time, Weber said he participated in some of the bloodiest conflicts of the war, including the Tet Offensive and the Battle of Saigon. 

Twice a year, Weber's group attends memorial services at the Peace Cross. He doesn't understand why the AHA has singled out the Bladensburg memorial. 

"Get a life. Do something. Why pick on the veterans? Probably the majority of them have never been in the service, or if they were they weren't on the front lines" said Weber....

"All crosses are not necessarily about God," said Weber. "You find a lot of cemeteries, especially in Europe for World War II, and they put crosses on them, just to honor the people who died there."

Personally, I don't think the Humanists on this one are going to do well.  The facts in this case are probably as good as we will ever see in one of these cross cases.  I suspect the court will rely heavily on the Van Orden v. Perry decision from the Supreme Court that factored in a sort of "historicity" of the monument.  This thing has been up since 1925, it's not as if some vengeful Christian erected it last Tuesday just to anger the Humanists. 

We'll be filing an amicus brief on this case as well, since we clearly have an interest in it.  We'll have more in the future.

Posted in the burner | 340 comments
 
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Comments

I am Happy the American Legion is getting involved in this issue

It's shameful that these people want to tear down the memorials to those who have served when many paid for the freedoms these people enjoy today with their lives. As a member of the American Legion and DAV I support keeping these memorials intact so that we can remember these sacrifices.

Whatever happened to "One Nation Under God". I am sick and tired of minority interests driving the bus. I want my country back!!!!

"One Nation Under God" was added in the early 50's. Those of us born before that could be saying, "How dare anyone mess with MY pledge?" I am an American Legion Lifetime Member; VFW Life Member; USArmy Retired (1973 - 1993); American Humanist Association Celebrant since 1983. I find some of these comments very intolerant.

Church and state are to remain separate. Just because something has been up for a long time does not make it any more legal. This is not an attack on the Christianity. This is the enforcement of the establishment clause. This monument can be identified that the government endorses one religion over another. If it is to remain up the area should be deemed a "free speech zone' In which either ALL religions (or lack of) can be represented by allowing any of their monuments to be placed on the same land of that location or NONE that represent one religion over another. This is not a theocracy.

This is NOT about the state establishing or endorsing a particular religion. It is a monument to those who sacrificed for this country LONG before all this 'political correctness.' I am sure that not all of these individuals were Christian, but that doesn't make it any less of a tribute to them also. I would not be offended if a Star of David, Crescent or any other religious symbol were added. I've been to military cemeteries in France and in the Philippines. I've seen more than just crosses. The point is, however, the state is not to ESTABLISH a 'national' church, such as the Church of England. THAT is what the Constitution spells out. You are correct! This is NOT a Theocracy. I am not 'offended' by the presence of this cross, nor should anyone else be.

Congress shall make NO law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the FREE exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

@Chavez, WHERE does it say anything about what you think it says. It IS an attack on our heritage and this is a memorial for better men than you who gave their lives to defend your right to open your mouth and remove all doubt about whether you are a fool!

I strongly encourage all my friends and other veterans to speak their minds! Tell me their opinions. Often they disagree. But at no time do I feel that if I disagree with their opinion that I'm somehow superior or that I have a "right" to insult them. As Veterans, don't we deserve at least that small level of common courtesy? That respect?

I am American Legion member I want anyone that cross to be left alone and srop anyone that thinks of taking down.

tell those cummunists to go the russia

tell those cummunists to go the russia

Let"s tear it down and replace it with a statue of two pot smoking homosexuals in their wedding attire. That would bring the tribute up to date!

That is the best insight/comment all time ! I love my country, but what the hell is happening to us ?!!!
Justin, I am not a homophobe, but I love my women ! But you are so right as to where this will end to keep all "people" feel others who are straight, are keeping them down. Laugh @ us now !

I think this monument should be left as is. It is not pushing a religion just representing one. I do think a lot of people have an agenda to push their religion and I think we need to stop that but this is not in that category.

Many seem to have totally missed the point/intention of the separation of church and state powers. This concept originated as an insurance that the government would not be able to interfere in the operation of any church, synagogue, or mosque. It absolutely did not mean running the government without religious beliefs. It came about because of England starting its own, government controlled church under the rule of Henry VIII. Learn from history or be condemned to repeat it.

Hey Joe Chavez, there is nothing in the constitution or any amendment about separation of church and state. If you tell a lie long enough stupid people like you believe it. The term "separation of church and state" was used in a letter from Jefferson to a preacher in New England. Supreme Court Justice Black used the term in the 1930s in a court ruling. The liberals and communists took the phrase and ran with it. Google establishment clause and you see the truth and the truth will set you free.

Amen! A humanist is a person, place, or thing. If it be particular it would be capitalized. The cross is a symbol of many things. It offends humanists like getting thumped on the back of their knuckles with a ruler. Capitalize the cross and it might be a religious symbol. It is no wonder even a Nativity scene worries humanists. It is a reminder of what Christmas is really about. Humanists like holidays and happiness. But throw in "God", that makes them unhappy. The cross is a reminder to remember anything or anyone for which it stands.

I agree- The Memorial needs to stand. What I don't agree with is Mr. Weber's statement, " probably the majority of them (protesters) have never been in the service or if they were, they weren't on the front lines." So, if you weren't on the front lines, you aren't a veteran or you don't understand the significance of the memorial?? I feel that Mr. Weber should not be lumping those of us who served, but were not in combat into the same category as the protestors he describes. All veterans need to stick together to work for common goals.

The first amendment prohibits the state from the establishment of religion, this veteran memorial has nothing to do with the establishment of religion but is clearly a memorial to honor those who have served their nation and laid their lives down to defend the constitution and America. Our courts have defiled the Constitution with their political correct views prohibiting the free exercise thereof, as the memorial is not a state constructed memorial but rather American's honoring their veterans.

I am not religious. I was infantry in Vietnam. Some people became more religious due to being shot at. I saw more than I wanted too. It made me less religious. Not that this is relevant, but just to let you know where I'm coming from.
Separation of church and state. I agree. The Constitution gives that right. This country was mainly of a religion that used the cross. I wouldn't suggest Israel should take down all their Stars of David, nor the Muslims, Buddhists, etc in their countries take theirs down. If someone in this country doesn't like a cross, too bad. If someone doesn't like some other religious symbol, too bad.
People have a right to their beliefs. If a religious symbol has been around a long time, leave it alone! Maybe in 50 or 100 years we may, or may not want to change things if religion has taken a different turn, although, not likely. Keep your selfish attitudes to yourself. It's a cross. Not a loaded machine gun. Don't be so damn petty!

I thank the Lord every day that my parents had the courage, wisdom and desire to come over from Italy in 1960 to this great country of ours. When we arrived we did not set out on a campaign to change the U.S.A but to accept it's ways, customs and freedoms. While not totally giving up spaghetti we learned to eat the new foods hot dogs, hamburgers and pancakes. In sports I was raised to play soccer but boy did I love going to Yankee stadium. Why don't these Humanist's just relax and learn to accept the great history and culture of the U.S.A Correct me if I am wrong but wasn't this country founded and established on Christian principles. Being an Italian immigrant one thing I know and believe in is the old saying when your in Rome do as the Romans do. If these people (so called humanists/enthusiasts) don't like it than leave.

Thank you. Very well said. If these people would spend their time doing something good in their communities they would have less time to tear down the ideals of others. Everyone has something they do not like but certainly do not go trying to destroy it. Live and let live. I thank all the veterans and their families for their sacrifices. Without them we would not be a free country today and these protesters would be in jail at the very least.

What a bunch of angry, hateful Christians! Thought Christianity was all about LOVE? The hate is so obvious! Religion ba. Total waist of time!

Be QuIet Dave,are you a veteran?What about your hateful remarks,don't be a sour lemon.

WHY DO WE HAVE TO GIVE INTO EVERY ONE WHO HAS A DIFFERENCE OF OPINION WITH WHATEVER IRKS THEM AND THEY WANT TO CHANGE. I SAY TO THEM GO DO SOMETHING USEFUL AND STAY OUT OF OTHERS BUSINESS. POLITICALLY CORRECT, GO TO HELL!!!

The cross has been standing since 1925. And now in 2014, somebody is "offended". Just like the liberals tell the rest of us when we don't like the garbage on TV or radio, Don't look at it." The first Amendment guarrantees the right to religious freedom, not the right to no religious freedom, The government is NOT establishing any religion because there is a cross in a cemetery. Just because the cross is there, the government is NOT requiring everyone to be a Christian, it is NOT requiring everyone to practice Christianity to the exclusion of their own faith. The cross has been used by many people of differnt faiths to mark a gravesite. It has almost become a generic symbol for many, just as Saint Nicholas has been transformed into the secular Santa Claus for many people.

I'm a USMC Veteran son of a Army 101 St Korea Veteran and grandson of WW2 D day Veteran. I lived in PG County Maryland in Mount a Rainier, MD and my Grandfather in Hyattsville, MD. I have visited and went by the peace cross countless of time and any true American is proud of that cross and what it represents. I ask humbly God almighty what is happening to decency of my country and our values I'm upset that something that ridiculous could even be suggested. Our beautiful country of values and brave men was founded on principles that have led our country to be blessed but lately we have turn away from our founding belief and gone against our own. God I humbly asked forgive us and make our elected officials honor our country and always glorify your presence in our blessed country. Amen

I agree with most everyone, I have been a Legion member for 56 yr. I am a korean vet and an AMERICAN
if these people don:t like it here they need to go to another country

I'm a Vietnam vet and you should Tell em to kiss ass, if they don't like it then don't look at it.

I suspect that if we surrounded the cross with a handful of vets and told those that wanted it down to come on and take it. My suspicion is that none of the would show up. This is part of the leftist element's desire to take morality and ethics out of our culture. I guess that there just isn't enough crime in that country for them.

What is wrong with people? Why is it the atheist's and a very small group of haters are always complaining about anything that really does not concern them. They need to start putting their energy into something to make America better instead of trying to tear it down. If they hate GOD that is their choice. Why can't the people that believe in GOD have any choice in anything the haters don't like? They took all religion out of the schools and now look at our children. They took religion out of Washington and now look at our Politicians. I'll bet all of the Veterans that died to preserve freedom are spinning in their graves with what is happening in America now.

I am a Viet vet and do not see anything wrong with honoring the vets of the greatest generation. Those men suffered some of the greatest atrocities ever devised by men. They were hit wit poison gases that, if they did not die right away, then they lifted a life of hell the rest of their years. We live in freedom now because of their sacrifices. The humanists see a cross and it makes them think of the Cross of Christ which they are trying so hard to escape from. I do not see anything being said about removing any and all signs of Islam from public places. I agree that if these people do not like America and what she stands for they need to go where they can agree with those people's agendas.

Today, Peace Cross, What's next, Arlington National Cemetery, after all, it's also government property full of crosses????? Get a life HUMANISTS!!!

They should change their name to "Jackasses for Humanity." Of course, jackasses will be insulted, but they don't get a vote. All this "PC" stuff has gone way past the point of rediculasness.

Why don't we tear down this cross and convert the park area to a monument of the year park. There could be queers one year. Osama Bin Ladden for another. Lesbians for another. Pedophiles could even be represented for a year. To alter this cross in any way would cause our country's founding fathers to vomit in their graves.

Move the cross to private or Legion property, and no one will complain.

After reading the article presented here, and the adjoining comments, I must say that, as a person tolerant and respectful of other religious and points of viewed, I'm a bit ashamed at this point to be a Legionnaire, and perhaps an American. Although it's true that the removal or relocation of this monument is a debate, the author of this article presents a one-sided, extremely biased write-up of the argument, which all but stereotypes and demonizes Humanists.

I have to wonder what the secular supporters of this monument would say if it were in the shape of another religion's symbol. The name-calling, accusations, hyperbole, and comparisons made in the comments have definitely soured my view. I'm not sure this is the organization my grandfather helped to build. I'm not sure if it's the organization for me.

OK, I guess I am confused now. This is a blog of the American Legion and I represent them. I'm not CNN or ABC news. My job is to argue for our positions. If I am not biased, towards veterans and the point of view of The American Legion that pays me, what should I be saying?

But for the sake of your strawman argument. The Dalai Llama is doing the Senate invocation this week. Have you seen throngs of Legionnaires protesting that? So what is the basis for claiming that we would argue against a veterans memorial that was in the shape of another religious symbol? In fact, I've attended function that had jewish symbols and didn't get upset about it.

In what way did I stereotype and demonize Humanists? I disagree with them, and in particular with their reading of the US Constitution. There were many people in law school I disagreed with as well. Some of them might have been Christian, Buddhist or Pastafarians. Disagreeing about a Constitutional argument doesn't seem exactly a horrible thing.

MOTHAX,

You are 100% right on the money here, the only thing that you left out is that the humanists forget that those veterans that the memorial was raised for lost their lives protecting the constitution that they are trying to use against it....how ironic!

"Taint the point USMC(nv). As someone uphill said,, we are guaranteed the freedom of religion, not the freedom from it. I have no religion myself and I'm amazed at how these "humanist" types cringe when they are shown the cross, as if they were vampires or something. It's as if they lack the courage of their own convictions and are afraid of it. We are a country where the majority rules not the other way around. If others are comforted by that symbol they should be allowed to go for it. It doesn't scare me one bit or effect me in any way. I just try to keep my nose out of their business

Who are the Humanists,if someone could list their names & businesses it would help...Thanks

Without the Cross there would be no America. Do to the politically correct times of today the humanist may be granted by the court to have the Cross, Ten Commandments, and the Bible remove from all public places, but we all will have to appear before God to give an account. There will come a time when even God will say enough. I am a retired Army Veteran an I have spent years in Turkey, Korea, and Iraq, and Dubai, and only in America where those who do not care what the cost of Freedom was, yet they reap the benefits and they are blind to the sacrifice. Please God Revive America.

I WANT THEIR ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER, EMAIL ADDRESS SO I CAN VERIFY THEIR MILITARY SERVICE TO AMERICA

"On May 29, [1919], ten thousand World War I Jewish veterans paraded in New York City to
protest the pogroms against Jews in Poland, Rumania and Galicia."

- from the JWV WebSite

How many didn't parade because they couldn't walk; how many could no longer breathe? Is
"Peace Cross - a WWI Memorial" to the Jewish survivors and fallen?

And, we'll never know how many Native Americans who were not Christians served our Republic in that conflict, too. Is it posssible that The American Legion could offer to move that cross to an appropriate and respectful Christian site, and replace it with a memorial to all of the fallen? I'm willing to contribute to that. Heck, we might even get the opposing litigants to pony
up part of the cost.

We all served because we are patriotic. Maybe there's a bette way to make this monument on public land contitutional.

im a vet usmc ,navy, it goes to show people do not have nothing to do but bringing up stupid law suites in court hoping to get some dum ass judge to side with them. if bothers you turn your head when you go by its time for the silent majority to start standing up and make our feeling heard where losing our country one step at a time.

A humanist is a person, place, or thing. If it be particular it would be capitalized. The cross is a symbol of many things. It offends humanists like getting thumped on the back of their knuckles with a ruler. Capitalize the cross and it might be a religious symbol. It is no wonder even a Nativity scene worries humanists. It is a reminder of what Christmas is really about. Humanists like holidays and happiness. But throw in "God", that makes them unhappy. The cross is a reminder to remember anything or anyone for which it stands.

I was working on a comment to this, but as I read all the previous comments---everyone already spoke my mind, much better than I could have. Tearing down the monument would be like going through a history book and tearing out everything you didn't like. That cross was put up for a reason and it's part of our history. And, I do think it's time that Christians stopped being the whipping post and speak up!

as a proud former 101 abn member and rvn vet (67-68) & a humanist, don't know why you choose to label these ass holes as humanists. none of my friends would object to this cross. in fact it's something to be proud of as an important peace of history. bottom line is an ahole is an ahole and in my opinion most humanists are not.

The American Humanist Association advocates progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists, freethinkers, and the non-religious. So, basically, they don't believe in anything that has any religious connection be it Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, and etc. They do have their First Amendment Rights and we must honor that. That said, however, we American Believers also have rights and it is time we start exercising those rights. We have the right to do business with whom we please. When humanists, atheists, freethinkers, and the non-religious insult us we have the right to not do business with them. In every community across this great GOD fearing country the humanists, atheists, freethinkers, and non-religious should stand up and let us all see their faces and hear their names. Then GOD fearing citizens can exercise their right to not do business with them. Do they stand up? Do they show their faces? Do we know their names? I think not! They are cowards! So my fellow GOD fearing citizens, identify the humanists, atheists, freethinkers, and non-religious and by word of mouth let us all know who they are so that we might exercise our GOD given right to not do business with them.

So…where is your photo, Doug Goar (Anot… (not verified)? Are you too much of a coward? I don't want to do business with you! (DOG given or otherwise!)

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.