Thursday, October 8, 2009


I'm thinking that if the Supreme Court decides that the cross should come down a whole bunch of people should go down and surround it; dare them to remove it. It should be a group comprised of all faiths. We are a country of believers. We may not all believe in the same God or the same doctrine and dogma but by and large Americans are religious people. We aren't offended by the free exercise of religion. We like and respect it. Christian, Jew, Muslim and all others need to stand against this. They won't just stop with the cross.

If we don't stand up against this unconstitutional abuse of our rights we will slowly lose our ability to worship freely. The government is imposing a religious view on us, the faith of no faith at all.

"Henry and Wanda Sandoz greet their visitors with a little warning: watch out for the "Mojave Greens," their name for "Crotalus scutulatus," the local rattlesnakes that inhabit the area around Sunrise Rock.

Henry and Wanda Sandoz stare up at the now-boxed 6-foot metal cross at the center of a Supreme Court case.

For them, the fight is not as much about the Constitution as it is a promise to a friend.

"He was an old miner who lived up in the hills and we befriended him," said Wanda Sandoz. "And he would come over to our house at least once a week to have dinner, and he was always at our house on holidays. He was part of our family and we really loved him."

The Mojave Memorial Cross was erected back in 1934 by that friend, Riley Bembry, a World War I veteran who wanted to honor soldiers who had perished in the "war to end all wars." The symbol he and his fellow "doughboys" (U.S. infantry in World War I) chose was a simple Latin cross, typical of many veteran memorials at that time...

...Another veteran with ties to the preserve is Frank Buono, who used to be the deputy superintendent of the park. He filed the original lawsuit protesting the cross.

"He's both a veteran and a devout Catholic but believes that the government sponsorship and favoritism of religion is not a good thing" Peter Eliasberg, an ACLU lawyer, said of his client. The presence of the cross to Buono is "really inconsistent with his beliefs and he thinks that the government is, in effect, misappropriating this sacred symbol and trying to give it just a secular meaning."


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