HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Justice & Public Safety » Civil Liberties (Group) » 'Big Mountain Jesus' gets...

Mon Aug 31, 2015, 04:01 PM

'Big Mountain Jesus' gets the OK from Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals [View all]

'Big Mountain Jesus' gets the OK from Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

The statue of Jesus Christ at Whitefish Mountain Resort overlooks Whitefish Lake and the Flathead Valley in Whitefish in February 2011. Federal appeals court justices in Portland, Ore., are hearing arguments from an atheist group that the six-foot-tall Jesus statue needs to come down because the ski resort is on U.S. Forest Service property, and the statue is therefore a violation of the constitutional principle separating church and state. Photo by LINDA THOMPSON, Missoulian

51 minutes ago • By Vince Devlin

WHITEFISH – “Big Mountain Jesus” is staying put.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday that the 12-foot statue at Whitefish Mountain Resort “did not sprout from the minds of (government) officials and was not funded from (the government’s) coffers.

The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation filed a lawsuit objecting to the 1954 statue of Jesus, installed by the Knights of Columbus on what was then called Big Mountain to honor World War II veterans and members of the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division. ... It stands on public land leased to a private organization.

“Does a statue standing alone in the forest establish an official state religion?” {Eric Baxter, senior counsel of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty} said. “Today the Ninth Circuit emphatically said no. The court rightly rejected Freedom From Religion Foundation’s radical idea that a privately owned memorial standing in the middle of a ski resort violates the Constitution.”

The court said “the flippant interactions of locals and tourists with the statue suggest secular perceptions and uses.” Those include “decorating it in Mardi Gras beads, adorning it in ski gear, taking pictures with it, high-fiving it as they ski by, and posing in Facebook pictures." ... The Freedom of Religion Foundation had appealed a 2013 decision by U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen, who dismissed the lawsuit on similar grounds.

5 replies, 1667 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 5 replies Author Time Post
Reply 'Big Mountain Jesus' gets the OK from Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals [View all]
mahatmakanejeeves Aug 2015 OP
randys1 Aug 2015 #1
Angry Dragon Aug 2015 #2
yeoman6987 Aug 2015 #4
randys1 Aug 2015 #5
HassleCat Aug 2015 #3