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U.S. Supreme Court rules the city of Grand Haven cannot put up a cross on public land

Grand Haven coast
Nelo Hostuma - flickr
Grand Haven coast

The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected an appeal in case about whether a West Michigan community can put up a cross on public land.

For decades, the city of Grand Haven would convert an existing monument into a cross and erect it over a stadium for summer concerts. But the courts ruled that was an illegal endorsement of religion.

Geri McCaleb, the mayor of Grand Haven, says many residents wanted to keep the tradition of raising the cross alive.

“Why can somebody from outside our community take down something that’s been part of our community for decades? And I share that concern,” McCaleb said.

The city hasn’t put the cross up since the case went to an Ottawa County Circuit Court judge in 2015.

McCaleb wishes community residents had more of a say in the matter.

“These sort of things should be decided by the community, they shouldn’t be just decided by courts,” she said.

However, McCaleb says the city will abide by the court’s decision.

Bryce Huffman was Michigan Radio’s West Michigan Reporter and host of Same Same Different. He is currently a reporter for Bridge Detroit.
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