Supremes deny Summum in Utah

The Supreme Court has ruled that the city of Pleasant Grove, Utah may decline the donation of a religious monument from a small religious group called the Summum, despite the fact that the city had already accepted a Ten Commandments display from another private group.

While I’m still trying to wrap my head around this 9-0 decision (and while it is being reviewed by American Freethought’s resident expert on Constitutional law, aka my wife) it appears the Court holds that government entities hold a right to free speech that is separate from the citizenry’s guarantee of free speech, thus the government is not obligated to accept every donated display. Americans United for the Separation of Church and State has already issued a response to the Court opinion.

Fair enough, but in this case the city of Pleasant Grove needs to explain how it can accept a monument celebrating one set of religious beliefs (a set of beliefs that has nothing particularly to do with the city) while denying a monument celebrating another (minority) set of beliefs.  Clearly, the Court should have ruled the City had no business posting the Ten Commandments in the first place; I fear this decision will only embolden religious groups and their vassal municipalities to the erection of more 10C displays.

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