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Mojave cross torn down by vandals

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Mojave cross torn down by vandals
All that remains on Sunrise Rock are the bolts that held the Mojave Desert cross in place.

Less than two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that, for now, the Mojave Desert cross could remain in its location, vandals have torn the memorial to World War I veterans down from its location, leaving only the bolts in Sunrise Rock as evidence of the cross.

The incident sparked outrage among supporters of the cross, including The American Legion, which filed crucial amicus (friend-of-the-court) brief in favor of the cross staying put.

"Reports that the Mojave Cross was illegally removed overnight are very disturbing," American Legion National Commander Clarence Hill said. "The American Legion expects whoever is responsible for this vile act to be brought to justice. While the memorial has been attacked, the fight will continue to ensure that veterans memorials will remain sacrosanct."

The act also drew scorn from Liberty Institute, which has represented the Legion and other organizations in the fight to keep the cross in its current location. "This is an outrage, akin to desecrating people's graves," said Kelly Shackelford, president/CEO of Liberty Institute. "It's a disgraceful attack on the selfless sacrifice of our veterans. We will not rest until this memorial is re-installed."

Park workers noticed on Saturday that the box that has covered the cross during the ongoing lawsuit had been removed. "When a maintenance team went out on Monday to put the box back up, that's when they discovered the cross had been removed," said Linda Slater, public affairs officer for the Mojave National Preserve. "The bolts are still in the ground, but the cross itself is gone."

Word got to Henry Sandoz - the cross' caretaker - and his wife, Wanda, on Monday.

"I have a friend who has a store in (nearby) Cima, and her husband drove by the cross on Sunday, it was uncovered," Wanda said. "(Monday) when he went by, he saw a bunch of park rangers on and around the rock. He stopped and asked what was going on, and one of the rangers pointed to the top of the rock and said, ‘Someone took the cross down.'"

Wanda said her grandson was coming home from college in Utah and was able to take photos of the rock and the pipe sticking out of the ground where the cross once was.

"It's really, really sad. I don't know who would do something like this," Wanda said. "I hope they get to the bottom of this."

Park law enforcement is investigating this crime and is asking for the public's assistance. Liberty Institute is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible. Anyone with information about the theft is asked to call (760) 252-6120.

Hill said the latest incident won't stop the Legion from supporting U.S. war memorials. "This was never about one cross," he said. "It's about the right to honor our nation's veterans in a manner in which the overwhelming majority supports. The American Legion strongly believes the public has a right to protect its memorials."

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SPC Jason Weisbrich

May 20, 2010 - 12:11pm

If you take a look at the demographics involved during that period of history, you will note that arguments involving religion, were generally about catholic or protestant services. That having been said, it was a memorial for heavens sake! Stop turning mundane memorials into political bargaining chips. You should be trying to protect it, not remove it. The next time you look at a cross on a soldiers grave, think how much you might have lost had they not given their lives to the cause of freedom. Just how thrilled would you be to be speaking German and living under an oppressive government? Starting a fuss with veterans to me is the poorest of choices one could make.

Freethinker

May 20, 2010 - 2:56pm

I can agree with you to a point SPC Weisbrich, and thank you for your service to our country. But speaking as a Vietnam Veteran myself, I know that no subject is so sacred that it can’t be criticized. Be it veterans or our leaders, everything must be open for review. I’ll beckon back to the words of Thomas Jefferson who said, “Question with boldness even the existence of a God”. I don’t support the loss of this memorial, but I also don’t support the creation of further commemoratives of its like. The bottom line is that it’s simply a separation of church and state issue. But beyond that, allowing any memorial to be erected, which excludes many sectors of American citizens, does not honor anyone if it breeds divisiveness. And nothing is more divisive than religion.

sugarbear67

May 21, 2010 - 5:05am

Wooooooooooooow man you sound totaly deep man like wooooooow. Hey now really Church and State? The Liberals have been pushing this Church and State thing around trying to get God removed from America. Freethinker, you sound just like you're the spokes person for the Atheist organization,(And nothing is more divisive than religion.), which contrary to Atheist's belief is not a religion . From what I was taught in school was that the "Separation of Church and States" was for the following: The United States Gov or any State Gov could not create a state run Church and say everybody must go to this church like England had when some king started to whack off women's heads. It didn't say people at work in the gov couldn't pray or hold services. If that's the case why do we have Chaplains in the military are they not part of the gov? Needless to say the ACLU is in the works to remove the crosses from military graves around the world.

bladevet12

May 19, 2010 - 9:06am

Paradigms and enlightenment beautiful words however if you have no religion or don't believe in a supreme power what do you have science well even in science if you go back millions even billions of years supersition has to come in to play because at some point you have to start from nothing everthing had to come from nothing even Einstein believed in God he said it was all to mathematical perfect to be a accident.After all if there is no God then let the strongest survive.

Freethinker

May 19, 2010 - 3:56pm

Yes “Enlightenment” really is a beautiful word. Also striking are all the human endeavors and accumulated knowledge behind this paradigm. All brought to us by science and human inquisitiveness. The term “Enlightenment” is what’s used to describe the vehicle that brought us out of the “Dark Ages” - not superstition. I also doubt that superstition will ever be used as an explanation for the Big Bang. And by the way, Einstein was far from a religious man. He often used the term “God” metaphorically to describe nature, or the essence of the universe. Just like when he said, “God does not play dice with the universe.” Here he was supporting his views of the mathematical beauty of the cosmos and the laws of physics. Shedding all belief in gods has brought me tranquility and liberation, and I no longer have to defend untruths and hatred. I now just pursue love, peace, and knowledge.

Freethinker

May 17, 2010 - 7:27pm

I’m hearing so much rancor and acrimony in these comments, and as long as attitudes like this continue there can be no peace, not only in the world, but in the hearts of people everywhere. Is it surprising then that it's often said that religion is the cause of war? It also perpetuates it. Not only clerics and imams, but military and political leaders have long known that they can get the people to follow them anywhere, and get people to do horrific things, if they can breed sufficient religious fervor. I believe that if we’re to survive as a species we must follow through with the wisdom of our Founding Fathers and strive to keep this a secular nation based upon human reason. However, my greatest fear and regret is that these words are apt to only fall upon deaf ears. Sometimes, some paradigms need to die out. Let’s let superstition pass as well, and replace it with enlightenment.

Boasts69

May 16, 2010 - 12:34pm

Boy, only two weeks after the Supreme Court ruled against the libral progressives-WHAT A COINCIDENCE! Yeah, right! Just like the oil rig explosion and the refinery fire only a few weeks before Congress was to start talks on CAP AND TRADE. There is no doubt in my mind that this administration will stop at nothing to destroy the U.S. and it's Constitutional law.

sugarbear67

May 16, 2010 - 4:37am

"we don't care about what the Corporate Supreme Court ruled, if you are going to insist that the cross is a RELIGIOUS symbol by refusing to allow any OTHER religious symbols with it, we will tear it down." So you little SOB did you tear down the cross!?!?!?!?! If you did you better watch your back!!!!!!!!!!! I can see now that you love having a weak minded pathetic excuse of a President in charge. President Obama rates right up there with Jane Fonda. I bet your proud he went to countries who harbor our enemies and bowed to them begging for forgiveness for being an AMERICAN. You also probably fantasize about sleeping with Nancy Pelosi especially after she made a mockery out of the great things Martin Luther King did by intentionally parading arm in arm with her flunkies through the crowds of loyal red blooded Americans to vote on a "National Healthcare Bill" adding another nail to our coffin as a country.

Michael.Montgomery

May 14, 2010 - 2:39pm

I just love Freedom of Speech. It allows idiots to self-identify. This save us all time and we know who the flaming trolls are immediately. Thank you for stepping up, imdaemon. I don't know or care what has made you such a bitter jerk, but I certainly appreciate your right to let everyone know that you are one. God bless America! Now let replace the monument fashioned and erected by veterans, to memorialize their (our) fallen comrades.

deerhorn

May 14, 2010 - 2:33pm

IMDAEMON - you are an ignoramus. Do all of us veterans, who are truly and justifibly proud of our service, a favor. Please refrain from referring to yourself as one of us. You are an embarrassment!!!!

britsgram

May 14, 2010 - 1:09pm

The cross was not a religous thing, it was in memory of our fallen men who fought to give the rights we have today. Through out our history this has happened so we are a free nation. It should be restored and stand as a reminder of the ways oour men and women have defended All of the people who reside in this great country where we CAN believe WHAT WE want to and have the right to attend what ever places of worship to what ever Diety they wish to. My husband was in WWII and my brothers in many that followed. We as a family have many different faiths in it but a memorial is a memorial to all who have defended oour rights. It is not a cross for the purpose to represent Christians only but ALL who have fought for this country WE ALL enjoy. See it for what it is and go on. AMERICA LAND OF THE FREE (everyone who lives in it.)

rukiddingme

May 14, 2010 - 12:07pm

imdaemon - your user name should be imnidiot. How can you say "The PEOPLE have spoken"? Gimme a break. So, everything the Supreme Court rules on has "RELIIOUS" overtones? I thought it was their interpretation of our constitution - guess I'm the idiot - NOT. I bet if "The PEOPLE" took the law into their hands and removed the swastika(or whatever might be important to you) from your front yard - you wouldn't be happy. Get a life.

JJones

May 14, 2010 - 11:51am

A group of veterans, in 1934, erected a simple white cross on a rock to stand as a memorial to their fallen comrades. This does not make it a National Memorial. If someone in your neighborhood stuck a cross in the ground and left it there for years and years to memorialize a veteran in their family, would it be called a National Memorial? No. I am all for supporting our fallen comrades, but people need to get over this. It was just some metal tubes welded together to form a cross. I am sure there are tons of veterans who have welding machines. Simply make another one. If it's all about the symbolism, then it shouldn't matter whether or not it is the original cross. The cross is not some ancient artifact like the Dead Sea Scrolls. Make another one and this will be over-with.....and while you are at it, add a Star of David, crescent, etc. for all the other religions...just so everyone else stays happy....

awollangk

May 18, 2010 - 7:59pm

The difference here is that it wasn't "someone in your neighborhood" and it wasn't done yesterday. It was "A group of veterans" and it was done in 1934. Also, it was already not the "original" as the one that was there was built in the 1990s. That is not the point. The point is it was put there by people who actually served and intended to honor their comrades. Since it was done on public land it has fallen to the Park Service to maintain. I understand why having a Christian symbol maintained by a federal organization would bother some people. I understand some people might see it as a violation of separation of church and state. It is part of our history, though, and as I've said in other comments its intent must be honored. That intent was not to honor the Christian religion but to honor fallen veterans. In order to preserve its history it should be restored unchanged.

nerd86

May 14, 2010 - 11:24am

Why is there such ignorance about marking a grave? Warriors in the past were buried where they fell and their sword was driven into the ground at the head of the grave. the sword created a cross. How is this a religious symbol? Of course it is if you chose to make it so, but it is out of ignorance. When I arrived at Korea shortly after most of the dying had been done. There was a hill on the Seoul side of the Hann River covered with crosses of warriors that fell at the battle for the Hann River bridge. Nothing I have seen or experienced again in my life had the impact of that hill. So keep up your petty battles about religion and miss what has been given so that you can be this small.

EShattuck

May 17, 2010 - 6:02pm

I'm not a military historian, but I seem to recall many of the swords made in the middle ages were purposely designed to resemble crosses, for religious reasons. So, I would not refer to swords as a non-religious symbol.

lperry

May 14, 2010 - 9:06am

The destruction of a memorial erected in 1934 by WWI veterans to honor their fallen brothers does not speak well of some hate filled members of the country's population. We have heard a lot about and have seen the federal government vigorously prosecute "hate crimes" in recent years. This was clearly a "hate crime". Will the federal government vigorously pursue and prosecute the offenders?

Charlie Penix

May 14, 2010 - 8:56am

I think it’s time for a Gun Ho Liberty!

imdaemon

May 14, 2010 - 8:54am

Since the U.S. Supreme Court now represents predominantly Christian corporatism which aims at turning this country into a theocracy tailored after Iran (a Christian version of it, anyway), the people have spoken: we don't care about what the Corporate Supreme Court ruled, if you are going to insist that the cross is a RELIGIOUS symbol by refusing to allow any OTHER religious symbols with it, we will tear it down. No different than the idiots threatening the public officials with guns at the town hall meetings and screaming racists obscenities at them, also known as the Tea Party (which originally was all about PRESERVING slavery as opposed to British decree abolishing it). "Patriotism" has many forms, he he. Both are examples of childishnes. As a veteran, I had no problem with the cross on the desert as long as it was there as a memorial to all fallen, as it was traditionally understood, until it BECAME a religious symbol through the fight to preserve it to the exclusion of all other

awollangk

May 18, 2010 - 7:41pm

This was not a statement by "the people", it was an act of vandalism by a small group. I voted for and still support Obama. My views currently tend to follow the current Democratic party. I am an ardent supporter of the separation of church and state. This memorial, however, was intended to honor the sacrifice of US World War I veterans so no matter what people are currently saying about it that initial intent *MUST* be honored. I cannot under any circumstance support or condone this illegal act and sincerely hope those who perpetrated it are brought to justice. The desecration of this memorial is an attack on the memory of the sacrifice of all service-men and women throughout this country's history. As a SANE liberal I feel obligated to respond to this remark. It is almost as offensive to me as the "Christians" who protest at military funerals. This vandalism cannot be defended without supporting desecrating the memory of veterans who gave their lives defending this country.

bladevet12

May 14, 2010 - 7:04am

I pray that they catch these despicable vandals that commitied this outrages act and at the same time have little respect for those who use this tragedy to make political statements.I know some strong Democrats that carry purple hearts going to tea party rallies in Japanese cars with american Flags on the back does not a patriot make.

jfschram

May 14, 2010 - 1:08am

God, Country and family, I guess Art has no idea what that means. I bet Art has no religous views or Patriotism for that matter. Symbols mean different things to different people. This Cross was a symbol of sacrific and patriotism. The courts ruling made it all to clear(to everyone except Art). To bad there a f^$%*^* dumb%$&# like Art. Probably voted for Obama.

NavyTrooper0013

May 14, 2010 - 12:52am

Oddly enough, this act doesn't surprise me whatsoever, given the sad sate of affairs our society is in, and has been sinking into for the past few decades now. Ten to one says that the vandals in this incident are ignorant 20-somethings who have never served nor likely held a real job in thier lives. Let's not forget that it's become very trendy to bash Christianity - a trend that's been nursed along for the past few decades by the liberal media and prime-time television. Keep in mind that these are the two leading sources of information for most people and it's used to put out marching orders and blow the loud horn of the Democratic/Liberal party line. As for a replacement memorial, I understand how important tradition is, but at the same time, I don't see a problem with honoring the veterans who served that might not have been Christian AS WELL. Perhaps a new memorial that honors them all. A melting pot, as it were of religions who fought against tyranny together.

E.Ball

May 13, 2010 - 11:54pm

Why not answer this defilement with another cross twice as large ?

4country

May 13, 2010 - 9:23pm

You are clearly an uneducated moron for not seeing the difference between a cross and buddha. The cross being the symbol of ultimate sacrifice which you clearly know nothing about. Thank GOD for every soldier and patriot that had and continues to have the guts to fight for our liberties and freedoms. This is what that cross bears honor to and to have it desecrated is a disgrace. Go back to the worthless existence you call a life and be thankful you even have one.

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:33am

Hey 4country, I think you are confused about what veterans fight for. If I remember correctly we took an oath to the constitution. The constitution does not mention the god, Jesus, the cross, or any other religious nonsense. You fought to protect the freedom of religion and from religion. Part of this means that the government cannot show preference to any one religion. Secondly, there are hundreds of gods that died for our sins, died and were resurrected, that were born on December 25th, and that turned water into wine, so quit being so melodramatic about this "ultimate sacrifice" Finally, I didn't ask Jesus to die for my "sins" I can handle them myself. But Doesn't it seem stupid that god sent himself to die for himself to overturn rules that he made and to wash away the original sin that he designed us to have? That ultimate sacrifice looks kind of silly. Besides Jesus only died for a few days, the guy next to him did a lot more.

4country

May 15, 2010 - 1:46am

choupick You clearly missed what I actually stated and instead chose to focus on your obvious hatred against christian religion. I talked about SOLDIERS fighting for our LIBERTY and FREEDOM. I did not mention Jesus, YOU DID. The cross is a symbol of human sacrifice due to the practice of crucifixions. It is a symbolic reference, not a religious one. I could give a crap less about whether you asked anyone or anything to die for your sins or what your personal religious beliefs are. The only religious reference I made was thanking GOD for soldiers and patriots. I didn't tell or ask you to thank GOD. Your the one being melodramatic here.

jimmyray49

May 13, 2010 - 8:53pm

The "Cross" has been a symbol for honoring those who have died for this country since the Revolutionary War. There are crosses on military cemeteries all over this country for all wars and there are tens of thousands of them scattered all over Europe. Let's look at this for what it actually is. This group picked this obscure cross in the middle of nowhere so they could move on to bigger and better hunting grounds if they could win. They thought no one would be paying attention. A victory there would mean the dismantling of all crosses across this nation. I do not believe this was done by anyone other than the ones who instigated this stupid lawsuit.

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:34am

The Cross has been a symbol of christian soldiers. Not all soldiers.

Airbornerightatya

May 13, 2010 - 8:40pm

Good to know if we run out of idiots we can always look to your family tree.

RA11800239

May 13, 2010 - 8:35pm

I believe in my heart that who ever did this vile act against the defenders of Freedom, who sacrificed so much for the Freedom of this country are the lowest form of dirt in the world. Men and women signed blank checks on their lives to defend this Freedom we have and many of the checks were filled with the lives of many on the field of battle and for the alter of Freedom. I hope, from my heart that whoever did this act, when they are caught, should be sent directly to Afghanistan and handed a rifle and let them see what it feels like to defend your life as well as the Freedom of your country from the terrorist that put no value on life.

sswilcox

May 13, 2010 - 8:34pm

The folks who tore the cross down perhaps are the same questionable excuse for people who go from military funeral to military funeral, protesting God knows what. I believe that we all have a right to voice our opinion, however,There has to be a line in the sand that shall not be crossed without some sort or painful result. I am one of those old, crazy VN VETs that still believes in respect and if you were to enter my space with the intent to do harm to me or my family or to disrespect the flag or military funeral, then I think a come to Jesus meeting would be called for....

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:36am

The people that protest at military funerals are fundamentalist Christians who think we are being punished by god. Hardly the same people.

toorisky

May 13, 2010 - 8:25pm

Well I hope that at least half the effort to take this cross down, will be put into finding the culprit(s). The person or group who wet thier pants and was so distrought at the site of this memorial should be the first one's seriously grilled and I will bet answers will be forth coming. So much is underfire like the boy scouts, prayer, Santa Claus(Christmas), and even Christ himself have cross hairs on them. Who is this very disturbed few that get heard and then get their way over the masses objection. I am about to turn a half century young, and I am so utterly confused as to public policy where I should have some sort of grasp on the situation by now. Where did it all go wrong and how do we fix it...?

DRW

May 13, 2010 - 8:22pm

The next thing they will want, or try to do, is to desecrate all of the tombstones at Arlington National Cemetery that have crosses on them. This action can not stand, these people must be stopped.

mechanic

May 13, 2010 - 7:51pm

I agree, put this scum in a room with a couple of vetrans me being one and a couple of the guys I served with. I can gurantee it won't take an hour to convince them that taking that cross was the wrong thing to do.

Roned

May 13, 2010 - 7:30pm

Art, you are criticizing what you term "religious zealots." The people who put that cross up intended to memorialize all veterans, no matter the faith. No one is stopping or has stopped representatives of other faiths from putting their icon up. They just haven't. As for insulting the non-Christian warriors who are "lying in the shadow of the cross", nobody is buried there. But you are so bitter and full of hatred it is probably a waste of effort trying to explain that to you.

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:39am

The Cross only memorializes christian soldiers. To say it memorializes them all is a great disrespect to people who aren't christian. And actually you are wrong. The reason the lawsuit was brought up is because ONLY the cross was allowed to stay up. Attempts to put up other memorials was fought by the park service/religious zealots.

EShattuck

May 14, 2010 - 3:56pm

choupick says "The Cross only memorializes christian soldiers". Really? How do you know? Were you there when it was erected? Did the men who erect it tell you this? Or, is this simply your interpretation of this symbol and your projection of your prejudices onto ohers?

jackemail

May 13, 2010 - 7:28pm

The same people that did this despicable act are those that condemn the Tea Party rallies. They are cowards and hypocrites.

redc1c4

May 13, 2010 - 7:04pm

some unhinged military hating atheist from Frisco.... where were you this weekend Art?

SUGIANT

May 13, 2010 - 6:58pm

It is too bad that someone decided to take this down and vandalize the memorial. But making it into the "Decline" of our civilization or the end of the US as we know is just way overboard. It's also not an example of Obama failing or our priorities being out of whack. It's a local vandlism issue probably brought on by all of the publicity involved, nothing more and nothing left. Also, someone started talking about understanding the meaning of what our founding fathers meant by seperation of Church and State. I would encourage anyone to go read up on what was meant by that. There were many opposing views, just as there are now, with Thomas Jefferson on one side arguing for a very strict seperation of Church and State, he crafted the wording as it is in the Virginia Constitution and Alexander Hamilton and John Adams on the side of a very loose connection between church and state. It is not as cut and dry as people like to make out. I personally fall on the Jeffersonian side.

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:43am

Ask the people who are not for a strict separation of church and state what they think about other religions being represented by the US and they will change their mind. They only support their religion as the state religion. Islam is a majority population in a few American cities. I guess as they grow we should add allahu akbar to our money and put up crescents to "memorialize" fallen soldiers.

EShattuck

May 14, 2010 - 3:48pm

I think if you check some of the military cemeteries, you will already find some crescents.

amauck

May 13, 2010 - 6:52pm

Replace the Cross with a Buddha. Yeah, I didn't think so. You Christians are just a bunch of hypocrites.

georgia star

May 14, 2010 - 8:46am

Replace cross, your an idiot. It's people like you that is ruining this country. Why don't you suck your sisters hind tit Ms. Pelosi. THIS is a Christian nation regardless of our apologetic Mr. Prez. What an LOSER

EShattuck

May 14, 2010 - 3:43pm

The issue is not about THIS being a Christian nation. The issue is that this cross was erected by WWI Vets for WWI Vets over 75 years ago, in the middle of the g-d dessert. Why in the h does someone feel the need to tear it down? Whether it is a cross, a star of David, or whatever, it doesn't matter. It is a piece of history and deserves respect for the men who erected it and for whom it honors. Replacing it or adding other symbols is stupid. Would we replace or add faces to Mount Rushmore?

millerfw

May 13, 2010 - 6:52pm

If you are a Christen, Honor and Repect the American flag and finally are an natural born citizen. you are no longer acceptable in this Country. The individuals that have done this, have no morals, no conscience and are very inmature. When caught I would like to get my hands on them. Hanging would be to good. If instead of a cross it would be any other religious symbol, no one would dare touch it. Sad Sad day.

choupick

May 14, 2010 - 8:45am

Killing people for stealing a cross. That's what Jesus would have done. I'm sure he would be proud of you.

SUGIANT

May 13, 2010 - 6:59pm

That's just not true. I have always felt comfortable in my country that I served and to say we are not acceptable is just not true. These are probably some kids thinking it would be funny.

motorhead

May 13, 2010 - 6:25pm

This is some of the problem with the World, cowards and scum like this. Instead of stepping forward and doing something constructive and making a difference the scum resort to this.

aj

May 13, 2010 - 5:54pm

This act should not go unpunished. This is the problem with our current government. This little act is worst than a many Americans dieing because of a bomb, whether is overseas or here, next to our homes. It is time we rise up and meet the challenge, it is time for our government to take control of what is important. Entertaining an Afghan is not what I call important. Think about it. I grew up in the 60's and even during those times of upheaval there were true citizens like me. Think about, analyze it: - Radicals that want the government out? - People without a sense of Country? - Immigrants wanting to get back to the government? - World terrorists wanting to make America look bad? Have I left anyone out? Let us fight to get our Country back!! The government, if that is what you call it now, it is not going to do that. They are more interested in what party gets the upper hand; they are more interested in re-election, they are more interested in pleasing world governments...

Glen Rountree

May 13, 2010 - 5:37pm

I simply do not know what to say about people who would do such a thing. I assume some sort of fund will be organized to raise money to replace the cross, and offer a reward for finding the scum who did this. Please post the information for us to see on the Legion website when it is organized.

NDEon20

May 13, 2010 - 4:58pm

Forgive me for saying, but it seems ever more obvious to me, that the United States in a moral decline. The same type of decline that has happened a thousand times before. As we have allowed our children and society to turn away from God in our teaching and decadence, we spiral faster and faster downward. Evil is called good and good is called evil, just as it is written. I think people have gotten more worried about offending others, than they have in offending their Creator. Hatred for such speech as this; is spewed forth consistently by Hollywood and elitists. The gate of tolerance has always swung one way - against the precepts of God. This is just one more example of moral relativism, and a lack of respect for others.

SPC Jason Weisbrich

May 11, 2010 - 6:35pm

After all that veterans have done for out great nation, this is how we get treated? The WW1 veterans got a cross erected in the desert, and someone steals it? Obviously they did not think of the implications before doing such a despicable thing. They in essence have desecrated the graves of each and every single WW1 veteran in the United States. What is truly sad, is that those involved more than likely did not fare so well in their history classes. If they bothered to read about the sacrafices those veterans made to preserve not only the freedom of U.S. citizens, but citizens of every country in the world, they might have left well enough alone. It is a sad testament to the morality and patriotism of todays society. I hope they find the people responsible and put them in a federal prison, so they can begin to understand what it is to literally fight for your life on a daily basis.

IrishSailor78

May 11, 2010 - 3:22pm

People need to understand what Seperation of Church and State really means. It was enacted by the founding fathers so, unlike England, the U.S. government would never mandate a state religion. It never meant to ban all religions from anything remotely controlled by State or, Federal governments. You can have christian monuments, Jewish, Arab, or, whatever on Federal land. You just can't have one to the exclusion of all others. Even John Adams, the second President of this country said; "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." So, the folks that did this are ignorant and hateful. I beieve in something else religious people tend to believe in as well...Karma. Here's hoping these fools get what they deserve...An hour locked in a room with 50 veterans.

Davedgreat2000

May 11, 2010 - 2:13pm

What did this cross ever do to anyone but memorialize WWI Veterans. Law Enforcement should be looking at those that brought the lawsuit in the first place, they probably took it down to protest the Supreme Court's decision. They should be brought to justice and the Federal government should get involved in investigating this hate crime. Put these Sorry SOB's in Jail for life.

amauck

May 13, 2010 - 6:58pm

Davedgreat2000 inanely said, "What did this cross ever do to anyone but memorialize WWI Veterans." [sic] Well, oh great David, it memorialized the CHRISTIAN WWI Veterans. Are you SO much a bigot you think the only people that fought in WWI were Christian? If the Cross is OK to memorialize ALL soldiers, then why not the Star of David? Or the Crescent moon? Would you want YOUR body to lay under the shadow of the "Horned God" Beelzebub? No, I didn't think you would. Why are you so short-sighted to think it'd be OK for those of other faiths (some of whom have been persecuted by Christians) to lie under the shadow of the cross? The trouble here is - you can't explain this to petty, single-minded zealots. Logic escapes them.

markbyrn

May 13, 2010 - 8:00pm

While the vandals are criminals, the American Legion should be deeply ashamed of itself for pandering to evangelical religious zealots who's intention with this Christian cross was to misrepresent America as a Christian State as opposed to a secular nation with citizens representing all religions and non-religions and that includes the Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Airman who fought for this country. Since the religious right is proffering the absurdity that the monument represents everybody, let's replace it with a Star of David or other religious symbol as Art suggested. Of course we know that's a load of rubbish but what's galling is the fact that the American Legion is violating it's charter by engaging in divisive sectarianism. That's a sure fire way to split the organization, cause loss of membership, and impede future membership.

amauck

May 13, 2010 - 6:52pm

Davedgreat2000 said "Law Enforcement should be looking at those that brought the lawsuit in the first place, they probably took it down to protest the Supreme Court's decision." Since WHEN has our United States Constitution, which as a veteran you should have sworn an oath to uphold and protect, EVER allowed "probably did it" as evidence? The inane statements made by Christians on this board just goes to show that you might defend the Constitution, but that doesn't insure that you understand what it actually STANDS FOR.

viall212

May 11, 2010 - 2:05pm

The Legion needs a section dedicated to the preservation of War Memorials. The same as they have for the protection of the flag. Our Memorials are under attack from the ACLU and vandals. Where can I contribute to the replace of the Cross at Sunrise Rock?

Stephen L. Chang

May 11, 2010 - 1:25pm

What a childish act. Obviously, the opponents of keeping the memorial as it is, where it is, were not happy with the Supreme Court's decision, so they broke the law - committed a federal offense? - to make their point. They made it. They are idiots.

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