It is a familiar Christmas story in America: a community adopts a symbol of the season — a Nativity, a tree or something similar — then the city gets threatened. Fearing a costly public battle city officials quickly give in. This time it is Knightstown, Indiana and the symbol is a cross atop a city Christmas tree. The ALCU calls that “establishment of a state religion”.
According to several media reports Knightstown resident Joseph Tompkins argues that the Christian symbol on display in the Knightstown town square violates the First Amendment. The lawsuit is seeking for removal of the cross, monetary damages and declaration that the cross display violates the First Amendment.
Tompkins, and the ACLU, agree that the cross is offensive and “forcing” religion on those who don’t want it. What they want is money and to force EVERYONE in Knightstown to believe as Tompkins believes. In essence, if this case is won by the ACLU Knighstown will be forced to be atheist.
Nobody will see it that way, of course.
The community has responded as you would expect. Crosses are suddenly everywhere.
But this will end as it always ends. The cross comes down. There will be no court case. And yet another sad chapter in misreading the Constitution will be written.
The suit says Tompkins “is forced to come into direct and unwelcome contact” with the cross on top of the tree as he drives through town. This, the suit says, has caused him “irreparable harm,” which can only be remedied by taking the cross down and paying Tompkins monetary damages.
The only “irreparable harm” comes from an elected City council that won’t stand up for itself and for the people it represents. They should counter sue for damages caused by all the publicity and take it to the ACLU. Hit them where they live — in the pocketbook.
It’s the American way.