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Religious Symbol

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 28, 1990 | DOUGLAS E. MIRELL, Douglas E. Mirell, an attorney in private practice in Los Angeles, is regional president of the American Jewish Congress.
In his ruling prohibiting the stand-alone display of a menorah on public land in Beverly Hills, U.S. District Judge Terry J. Hatter Jr. captured a part of the tragic irony that attends the Chabad Lubavitch sect's annual efforts to place this unique symbol on government property during the eight-day Jewish religious festival of Hanukkah.
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OPINION
February 9, 2014
Re "The cost of a cross," Editorial, Feb. 7 From 1957 until 2004, the central figure on the Los Angeles County seal was the image of the Roman goddess Pomona, the goddess of fruit trees (which seems fitting considering the importance of the citrus industry in the history of Los Angeles County). So my question for those who object to showing an image on the county seal of the San Gabriel Mission as it actually appears - with a cross on top - and to those who view this as somehow an endorsement of Christianity is this: Was the former seal an endorsement of Roman paganism?
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WORLD
January 11, 2004 | From Times Wire Reports
Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Dewael called for a law to ban religious symbols in courts, schools and public offices and lauded plans for a similar ban in public schools in France. "The government should remain neutral in all circumstances and be represented as such," said Dewael, who is also interior minister. "That means no distinctive religious symbols or veils for police officers, judges, clerks or teachers at public schools.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 7, 2014 | By Abby Sewell and Seema Mehta
A divided Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to add a cross back to the county's official seal, despite warnings the decision would invite legal challenges. The proposal to change the seal, which appears on flags, vehicles and written communications with residents, was advanced by board members Michael D. Antonovich and Don Knabe and picked up a required third vote from Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. The cross will be added to a small depiction of the San Gabriel Mission now in the seal.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 5, 1989
We enjoy strolling through Presidio Park, relaxing under the blue sky, feeling the warmth of the sun and the gentle breezes, and especially viewing the beautiful greenery located high on the hill. And then a religious symbol, a rock and mortar cross promoting one particular religion, appears there. We recently noticed that the once-tall standing shrubbery on the northwest side of that cross had been pruned down close to the ground. We suspect that the cutting of the greenery was done to improve the view of the cross for those traveling on Interstates 8 and 5. Yet why should someone who is not of the same religion be slapped in the face with it every time they drive by?
NEWS
November 18, 1990
It is unfortunate that a bare majority of the all-Jewish Beverly Hills City Council has succumbed to pressure exerted by the Chabad sect of Orthodox Jews by again permitting the erection of a 28-foot Hanukkah menorah on public land adjacent to City Hall. (Times, Nov. 8). It is outrageous that the council's three-member majority apparently based its decision on the flatly false claim that a menorah--the nine-branched candelabrum whose construction, mode of lighting and placement are all regulated in detail by the code of Jewish religious laws--is somehow not a religious symbol.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 7, 1988
It was with great disappointment that I read of Foodmaker's donation of $5,000 to replace the aluminum cross on Battle Mountain in Rancho Bernardo. Together with the money spent on the previous cross in March, this makes $10,000 spent to erect a religious symbol offensive to the many non-Christians who pass this place every day on the freeway. I suppose that Foodmaker, "wanting to make a statement of community good citizenship" felt this to be a high-profile means of advertisement.
OPINION
June 8, 2004 | Douglas W. Kmiec
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors faces a defining -- or, if you will, redefining -- moment. A motion will be made today to reconsider its 3-2 vote last week to remove a Christian cross from the county seal, an action taken in the face of a threatened American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit and in the name of religious freedom. But the 1st Amendment allows us to appreciate faith's role in our history as we avoid improper favoritism among different traditions.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 19, 1990 | SUVAN GEER
Craig Antrim's mysterious symbology appears to have gotten a dose of domestic inflection in this round of paintings. Houses and house plants, strange but identifiable, vie with crosses and other more obscure images for cryptic emotional impact. Works like "Dark Wing" and "Succulent," with their overt dual realities, bring to mind the colorful metaphysical painting of plants and swans by Hilma af Klint.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 19, 1986 | KIM MURPHY, Times Staff Writer
In a ruling that recognizes government's right to embrace certain religious symbols, a Superior Court judge Thursday granted the City of Los Angeles' request to display an historic Jewish menorah at City Hall. Judge Robert H. O'Brien rejected the American Civil Liberties Union's contention that displaying the menorah next to a Christmas tree in the City Hall rotunda violates the constitutional requirement for separation of church and state.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 21, 2012 | By Thomas Curwen, Los Angeles Times
Long before the promise to the dying man, the Buddhist stupa and the Supreme Court decision, there was the land. Once it belonged to no one, then it belonged to everyone, and that's when the trouble with the cross began. Mary Martin, superintendent of the Mojave National Preserve, read her mail in the morning, and on a spring day in 1999 she picked up a letter signed by Sherpa San Harold Horpa. It sounded like a joke. Horpa began by describing "a tasteful cross that stands on a small hill.
OPINION
January 29, 2012
The Supreme Court has long struggled with the question of whether the 1st Amendment prohibits the display of religious symbols on public property, sometimes producing seemingly contradictory decisions. Now the House wants to add to the court's work. Last week, it approved a bill allowing religious symbols on war memorials. The bill was introduced by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) after the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals declared the 43-foot cross atop San Diego's Mt. Soledad an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion.
NATIONAL
January 25, 2012 | By Richard Simon, Los Angeles Times
The House on Tuesday approved a measure that seeks to permit religious symbols on federal war memorials, a response to a court ruling that declared a cross atop a San Diego memorial violated the Constitution. The War Memorial Protection Act passed on a voice vote in the Republican-controlled House but faces uncertainty in the Senate. The measure, which would allow religious symbols to be included in military monuments, was introduced by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) after the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals declared the 43-foot cross atop Mt. Soledad an unconstitutional "government endorsement of religion.
OPINION
December 17, 2011
Unto Santa Monica a Christmas controversy was born this year. Atheists objected to the long-standing tradition of re-creating the Nativity story in a row of life-size paintings that sprawl down the Ocean Avenue edge of Palisades Park. Arguing that this was a religious display in a public park, they applied for space to offer their own message. In an effort to be fair, the city turned to a lottery to assign 21 plots of display space — and lo, the atheists won 18 spots. A Jewish group won a spot for a menorah.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 13, 2008 | Tony Perry, Times Staff Writer
For two decades the emotionally volatile issue of the 43-foot cross atop Mt. Soledad has been in the state and federal courts. Nearly all the rounds have been won by plaintiffs who say the cross, erected in the early 1950s, is an unconstitutional intrusion of religion on public property. The legal fight has outlasted the careers of numerous politicians and judges and the life span of the original plaintiff. Various legal and political stratagems by city officials to save the cross failed.
HOME & GARDEN
June 12, 2008 | Janet Eastman, Times Staff Writer
IN ALMOST every room of Susan Cohen's Santa Monica house, there are Buddha statues: sitting, standing, reclining. Some are gray, others purple or pink. A 4-foot-tall copper-colored cast-resin Buddha head is propped up in the backyard pond, and a tiny ceramic figure gazes from the dashboard of her car. Cohen isn't a Buddhist, and in 10 years of displaying symbols of the ancient religion, no one has asked if she is. She's just drawn to what the statues represent: serenity, wisdom, peace.
NEWS
June 4, 1993 | PATRICK MOTT, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Overheard in a Southern California jewelry store: "Do you want just a plain cross or do you want one with the little man on it?" The line between devotional wear and pure fashion may not be that stark--or sacrilegious--but you get the idea. You don't necessarily have to be religious to wear religious jewelry. Madonna, of course, was the bellwether of the trend toward religious jewelry as fashion in the early '80s.
NEWS
December 24, 1988 | United Press International
It's Christmas. And that means creche and that, in turn, means court. On Wednesday, five major religious groups announced that they have asked the Supreme Court to reconsider its 1983 decision that permits government promotion of Christian Nativity scenes under certain conditions. In a friend-of-the-court brief, the five groups said the 1983 decision, Lynch vs. Donnelly, "is fraught with difficulties" and should be set aside.
WORLD
January 16, 2005 | Ashraf Khalil, Times Staff Writer
The symbolism couldn't have been less subtle. Amid tight security in a compound still bearing the effects of a recent car bomb attack, the top candidates of the powerhouse United Iraqi Alliance slate gathered Saturday to address the media. Interim Vice President Ibrahim Jafari was there. So was former Pentagon protege Ahmad Chalabi. Looming over them, appropriately larger than life, was the white-whiskered, heavy-browed image of arguably the most recognizable face in today's Iraq.
OPINION
June 8, 2004 | Douglas W. Kmiec
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors faces a defining -- or, if you will, redefining -- moment. A motion will be made today to reconsider its 3-2 vote last week to remove a Christian cross from the county seal, an action taken in the face of a threatened American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit and in the name of religious freedom. But the 1st Amendment allows us to appreciate faith's role in our history as we avoid improper favoritism among different traditions.
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