A cross at the crux of a recent Supreme Court case has been stolen from the Mojave National Preserve in Southern California, the Associated Press reports. The World War I memorial cross, erected in 1934 by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), was at the center of the Court's April ruling about whether such memorial crosses violate church-state separation.
The National Park Service told the AP that someone cut the bolts holding the metal cross late Sunday. Preserve spokesperson Linda Slater told the Desert-Dispatch that the cross's wood covering was noticed missing Saturday. The uncovered cross was seen Sunday but was missing later in the day when preserve staff went to replace the wooden cover.
The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 on April 28 that Mojave's cross could stay for the time being, as the First Amendment "does not require the eradication of all religious symbols in the public realm." It sent the case back to lower courts that had ruled against the cross as governmental endorsement of religion. ...1