Following 10-plus years of legal conflict thanks to a nuisance lawsuit filed in 2001 by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a federal judge has finally ruled that a cross placed in the Mojave Desert in 1934 to honor World War I veterans may remain there permanently.
In the settlement approved April 23, the National Park Service will turn over the hilltop area known as Sunrise Rock, upon which the simple cross sat before being removed by the park service, in return for the private donation of five acres elsewhere in the 1.6 million acre preserve in Southern California. The care of the cross site will fall to a Veterans of Foreign Wars post in Barstow, California, along with the Veterans Home of California-Barstow, reported the Associated Press.
“Once the swap is complete, the park service will fence the site, leaving entrances for visitors, and post signs noting that it is private land,” reported AP. Said Mojave National Preserve spokeswoman Linda Slater of the lengthy legal wrangling: “We want to wrap this, we want to get it done. No cross can go up until the exchange is complete.”
The land is being donated by Henry and Wanda Sandoz, who lived in the area before moving to Yucca Valley. Henry had promised World War I veteran Riley Bembry, who first erected the cross in 1934, that he would continue caring for the site after Bembry died, and Wanda said that over the years her husband cared for or replaced several crosses that had been stolen or defaced. “We love the cross,” she told AP. “It’s in a beautiful spot…. My husband is not a veteran, but he feels like this is something he can do for our country.”
With little more than a month to go until Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker faces his recall vote, unions and their supporters are pulling out all the stops to replace him with one of their own.
Writing for the pro-union newsletter The Progressive, its political editor Ruth Conniff decried every major piece of “Act 10” — the highly contested Budget Repair Bill that Walker finally got passed by the Wisconsin legislature last March — saying that “If you want a preview of the Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan plan for America, take a look at Wisconsin:
- Huge tax breaks for corporations….
- Deep cuts to health care, education, unemployment insurance….
- Rolling back … protections and … regulations….
- Waging war on labor unions, taking away public employee’s collective bargaining rights….
So where does this blueprint leave us?
Wisconsin is now dead last in the nation, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, for job loss.
Between January 2011 and January 2012, while 44 states and the nation as a whole were adding jobs, Wisconsin was one of only six states to lose jobs — and Wisconsin's job loss was the worst among that handful of losers.
Padilla (left) is a citizen of the United States and a convicted terrorist. On Monday, he filed a petition for a writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court requesting that the nation's highest court review the decision of an appeals court to dismiss his suit alleging torture at the hands of U.S. government officials.
Earlier this year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond, Virginia upheld a lower court's dismissal of the complaint. In his suit, Padilla claimed that, as an American citizen captured within the United States, he was unconstitutionally designated as an "enemy combatant," and alleged a range of other constitutional violations arising from his detention at a military prison in South Carolina.
Additionally, Padilla said that he was denied access to legal counsel in contravention of his civil rights as guaranteed by the First, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
Padilla also asserted that he was denied access to the courts in violation of his constitutional rights as set out in Article III, the First Amendment, the Fifth Amendment, and that the government of the United States refused to permit his writ of habeas corpus in violation of the the Habeas Corpus Suspension Clause of Article I.
A cross that has graced a World War I memorial at a fire department in Rhode Island for over 90 years has become the latest target of the atheist Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF). The group charges that the cross, perched atop the memorial at a fire stations in Woonsocket, a suburb of Providence, amounts to a religious symbol and, thus, is unconstitutionally impermissible on public property in the God-fearing community.
In an exhaustive seven-page letter to Woonsocket’s mayor, Leo Fontaine, FFRF objected to the “unconstitutional Latin cross” on the memorial in the fire station’s parking lot, as well as the “unconstitional religious postings on the Woonsocket Fire Department website.” Most specifically, the anti-religious group complained about the web content, is a page containing “a prayer that makes reference to a monotheistic god and a picture of an angel.”
“It is unlawful for a city government and its agencies to display patently religious symbols and messages on city property,” the atheist group soberly advised. “The website impermissibly demonstrates a preference for religion over non-religions,” and the Latin cross on the memorial “demonstrates Woonsockets preference for Christianity over other religions and nonreligion.”
In a surprise move the White House issued a statement on Wednesday threatening to veto CISPA (Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act) because of privacy concerns. Parts of the statement sounded as if they had been drafted by Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul:
As President Obama and his GOP presidential rivals continue to pound the campaign trail, the grave issue of student loan debt has come under the spotlight. In what critics are calling the next "debt bomb," total student loan debt is slated to top a record $1 trillion, an amount larger than total U.S. credit-card debt and only second to the nation’s overall mortgage debt.
Perhaps prodded by Virginia’s success in passing a law preventing the federal government from apprehending and indefinitely detaining citizens of that state, the state legislature of Arizona on Tuesday passed its own anti-NDAA bill.
The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments April 25 in the Arizona immigration case that pits the right of that state to protect its borders against efforts by the federal government to claim exclusive authority over immigration policy.
Help stop corporate welfare by supporting H.R. 4268 to abolish the Ex-Im Bank.
A Catholic bishop in Illinois has come under intense attack for his comparison of President Obama’s healthcare policies with actions taken by Hitler in Germany. Bishop Daniel Jenky told attendees during a mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria April 14 that the Obama administration is modeling historically repressive regimes that “tried to force Christians to huddle and hide only within the confines of their churches.”