I was disappointed to hear that The Freedom from Religion Foundation has asked for the removal of the cross on the Veteran’s memorial downtown. As a Taos resident and atheist, I am sensitive to issues of religious establishment, but this is a step too far. This is very different from putting a memorial to the Ten Commandments in front of a courthouse. To me, the memorial clearly serves a secular purpose, and the cross is a historical accident of the era of its construction. I have never felt unwelcome in this town because of my (lack of) religious beliefs, and the cross remaining on the memorial won’t change that.
Many similar cases have been fought and lost by town governments in the past. I hope the town treads carefully on this issue, because if it goes to court, it will be extremely expensive and the town will probably lose. San Diego solved a similar case by donating the land underneath a war memorial cross to a private veteran’s non-profit. Perhaps we could do the same.