- Associated Press - Saturday, October 10, 2015

WILMORE, Ky. (AP) - The Freedom From Religion Foundation is asking the City of Wilmore to remove a Christian cross from on top of its water tower.

WLEX-TV reports (https://bit.ly/1QeRRjD) Mayor Harold Rainwater received the request in a Sept. 29 email from the atheist group. The letter says the cross creates the perception the Wilmore government endorses Christianity.

“It is unlawful for Wilmore to display a patently religious symbol such as a Christian cross on public property,” the email states. “It conveys the message to the nearly 30 percent of the U.S. population who are not Christians that they are not favored members of the political community.”

The water tower is located on the campus of a private Christian school, Asbury University, and the cross was originally placed there by the school. Later the tower was later transferred to the city. The tower has city’s name written across it, underneath the cross.

Rainwater told the television station he has no intention of removing the cross. He said the city has alternatives, like turning the water tower back over to the university.



The Freedom From Religion Foundation was involved in a similar dispute with the town of Whiteville, Tennessee, in 2011. That city also had a cross on top of its water tower. Whiteville eventually agreed not to place religious symbols on city property and to pay the foundation $20,000 for its legal fees.

The letter to Rainwater references that case and the hefty settlement.

Nonetheless, Rainwater said he won’t respond to the email until he sees a court order.

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Information from: WLEX-TV, https://www.wlextv.com

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