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Freethought Today · November 2015

Published by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc.

FFRF protests Kentucky water tower cross

FFRF has objected to a cross atop the Wilmore, Ky., water tower. "It is unlawful for Wilmore to display a patently religious symbol such as a Christian cross on public property," said Senior Staff Attorney Rebecca Markert in a Sept. 29 letter to Mayor Harold Rainwater.

Markert informed Rainwater that FFRF successfully sued the town of Whiteville, Tenn., over its water tower cross. Ultimately, the town agreed to settle the suit, paying FFRF's costs and legal fees.

The Wilmore water tower is on the property of Asbury University, a Christian liberal arts college, but is owned by the city of Wilmore. When ownership was transferred from the university to the city 45 years ago, the school stipulated that the cross should remain.
Rainwater has vowed to keep the cross. "I'm certainly going to fight to keep it with everything I've got. I think it's symbolic of our town," Rainwater told the Jessamine Journal. "We won't take it down unless we're forced to take it down."

"The United States is not a Christian nation, Kentucky is not a Christian state, Wilmore is not a Christian town, and its water tower serves all residents regardless of religion," said FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. "Crosses belong on church steeples, not public water towers."

FFRF urges any Wilmore residents offended by their government's endorsement of Christianity to reach out to FFRF.