WASHINGTON, D.C.—House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) released the following statement upon completion of oral arguments in the United States Supreme Court in the American Legion’s case defending a nearly century old Peace Cross in Bladensburg, Md.
“For almost a century, the Bladensburg Peace Cross has stood in memory of 49 Maryland soldiers who gave their lives for their country in World War I. Today, the Supreme Court heard arguments over whether a memorial in the shape of a cross is a violation of the Constitution because it is the symbol of Christianity. The Supreme Court should recognize that religious words and symbols have been a part of our nation’s history and tradition from the founding. The cross has been chosen to symbolize courage, sacrifice, and remembrance in a variety of ways. Religious words and images also adorn countless government buildings, including inside the United States Capitol. This tradition clearly demonstrates that the true meaning of the Constitution’s Establishment Clause is not hostility or the prohibition of religion in our way of life, but a longstanding role that should be preserved. Now, the Court has an opportunity to do just that—recognize the true purpose of the Constitution, honor the memory of our fallen, and preserve the longstanding role religion has played in the history of our country.”
In July 2018, Whip Scalise and Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), with the support of 109 fellow members of Congress, filed an amicus brief to stand up for religious freedom and the memory-of and tributes-to our fallen soldiers