Reading says the Easter cross stays

April 2, 2009 5:18:25 AM PDT
An Easter cross is shining from a city-owned tower in eastern Pennsylvania despite the threat of a lawsuit. Reading Mayor Tom McMahon says the cross on the William Penn Memorial Fire Tower will stay on through Easter.

The American Civil Liberties Union and Washington, D.C.-based Appignani Humanist Legal Center have demanded that the cross be removed. Center attorney Robert Ritter says cross displays are banned on government property because they endorse a particular religion, and a federal suit will be filed over Reading's cross.

McMahon says he will not change what the city has done for decades. He says several law firms might defend the city for free.

A church erected a cross on the tower in 1959, and since the 1990s a city-made light grid forms a cross at Easter and a star at Christmas.

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Information from: Reading Eagle, http://www.readingeagle.com/

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