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AHLC Makes Arguments at Hearing in Federal Court Over Pensacola Cross

For Immediate Release


Patrick Hudson, Communications Assistant, 202-238-9088 ext. 105,

Monica Miller, Senior Counsel, 202-238-9088,

(Pensacola, FL, June 14, 2017)—The American Humanist Association’s (AHA) Appignani Humanist Legal Center presented its arguments today before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, seeking summary judgment in a lawsuit aimed at preventing the continued state sponsorship of a religious monument.

The AHA in conjunction with the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) filed a lawsuit in 2015 on behalf of Pensacola residents who felt that a large cross, located in a city park and maintained by the city government, represented a troubling elevation of the Christian faith above other beliefs. The request for summary judgment, filed in April of this year, prompts the court to make a decision regarding whether the massive Christian display violates the Establishment clause of the First Amendment.

“Binding legal precedent requires the removal of the city’s cross,” said Monica Miller, Senior Counsel at the Appignani Humanist Legal Center. “Such an overt Christian monolith endorsed and displayed by the city is a clear violation of the Establishment Clause, and today we presented our arguments urging the court to respect all citizens’ First Amendment rights.”

Documents relevant to the case can be found here.


Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Humanist Association (AHA) works to protect the rights of humanists, atheists, and other non-religious Americans. The AHA advances the ethical and life-affirming philosophy of humanism, which—without beliefs in any gods or other supernatural forces—encourages individuals to live informed and meaningful lives that aspire to the greater good of humanity.

Special thanks to the Louis J. Appignani Foundation for their support of the Appignani Humanist Legal Center.

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