If you visit Young’s Park in Knoxville, Iowa, you’ll see a display of a kneeling soldier, holding a gun, underneath a Christian cross:
It looks eerily similar to a monument that was ruled unconstitutional in Lake Elsinore, California.
Now, Americans United for Separation of Church and State is calling on the local city council to remove or change the display in order to avoid a lawsuit. But City Manager Harold Stewart says they’re not budging:
“I informed the individual [who later alerted AU] that while it is a cross that is commonly used as a religious symbol, in this instance it represents the grave of a fallen soldier (of which there are literally thousands on Federal property in Arlington cemetery) and therefore would not be removed at my directive,” Stewart wrote in an email. “The individual then informed me that a complaint would be filed with a national organization that fights these types of issues.”
At Arlington, however, there’s a multitude of religious displays, including Wiccan and Humanist symbols. No one symbol is treated more prominently than another.
This display in Iowa only features the Christian cross, as if no non-Christians sacrificed their lives for this country. They have a few options: Remove this display, open the park up to displays of other religious beliefs, or just alter it to remove the religious symbolism.
Stewart said the issue would be discussed at the next city council meeting on September 8, and the public will be allowed to make comments.
(Image via Imgur. Thanks to Joe for the link)