ICC Note: Following a complaint from the atheist group Freedom from Religion Foundation, the city of Glencoe, Alabama has decided to remove a Christian flag from a local police department. The complaint stated that similar displays have been deemed unconstitutional due to the “endorsement of religion” on government property. In a later interview, the mayor announced that the removal of the flag took place in order to avoid the high costs of the legal battle that was likely to ensue.
By Michael Gryboski
07/07/2015 United States (The Christian Post) – An Alabama city has opted to remove a Christian flag from government property following a complaint from a Wisconsin-based atheist organization.
City of Glencoe recently took down a Christian flag which had been put on the grounds of a police department following a letter of complaint sent by the Freedom From Religion Foundation.
Tashia Blackerby, spokeswoman for City of Glencoe, told The Christian Post that the FFRF complaint was tied to previous issues the atheist group had with her city.
“We received letters from the [FFRF]. First of all, it was on our manger scene. We had a manger scene at Christmas time,” said Blackerby.
“And then it was back-to-back with the Christian flag that we had flying out here in front of the police department.”
In February, FFRF staff attorney Andrew Seidel sent a letter of complaint to an attorney representing Glencoe regarding the flag.
“The display of this patently religious symbol on City property confers government endorsement of Christianity,” wrote Seidel.
“A majority of federal courts have held displays of Latin crosses on public property to be an unconstitutional endorsement of religion.”
Last week Glencoe Mayor Charles Gilchrist announced to local media that the flag was indeed removed from its place on government property.