The American Atheists Group lost its second attempt to have the Ground Zero Cross removed from the 9/11 National Memorial Museum in New York City.
A federal appeals judge ruled Thursday the group was unsubstantiated in its claims that its constitutional rights were violated, giving the organization until July 14 to file supplemental briefs, Fox News reported.
The 17-foot-tall intersection of crossed I-beams, unearthed from the rubble of the collapsed twin towers, has served as a beacon of hope and inspiration for throngs of visitors since the tragedy. It was placed in the museum along with thousands of other objects commemorating the many who lost their lives in the attack.
“We’re thrilled that the court picked up on this issue,” said attorney Eric Baxter, who filed a brief on behalf of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. “Courts should not allow people to sue just because they claim to get ‘dyspepsia’ over a historical artifact displayed in a museum.”
The atheist group sued in 2011, claiming the symbol caused its constituents anxiety, depression, “mental pain and anguish” and indigestion. A federal judge in New York threw out the case in 2013. Thursday’s ruling came in the group’s attempt to appeal that decision.
“I think speaking out about some of the ridiculous claims of some of these activist groups … is very good for the fabric of our society,” the Rev. Jonathan Morris said on “Fox and Friends” on Sunday, lamenting that some groups were “pushing the Constitution to a place where it was never meant to be.”
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