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Constitutional Law Keyed to Maggs
American Legion v. American Humanist Ass’n
Citation:139 S. Ct. 2067 (2019)
Since 1925, the Bladensburg Peace Cross (Cross) has stood as a tribute to 49 area soldiers who gave their lives in the First World War. 89 years after the dedication of the Cross, respondents filed this lawsuit, claiming that they are offended by the sight of the memorial on public land and that its presence there and the expenditure of public funds to maintain it violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. The image used in the Bladensburg memorial – a plain Latin cross – also took on new meaning after World War I. The image of a simple white cross developed into a central symbol of the conflict. Recognition of the cross’s symbolism extended to local communities across the country.
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