The United States Supreme Court has made an important decision regarding whether a Christian-themed flag should be allowed to fly outside of Boston City Hall.
The high court has agreed to hear the case, according to reports Monday after Boston officials filed a lawsuit claiming that allowing the flag to fly over a flagpole is often equivalently used by community groups. with government endorsement of a particular religion.
Attorneys for Harold Shurtleff, whose 2017 request to fly the Christian flag was denied, cite that in the 12 years before his request, not one of the 284 proposed events had been denied by the city. .
Boston’s attorneys told the Supreme Court: “The prominent flagpole at the city’s seat of government is the vehicle by which the city communicates its own message. The city uses it as a bully podium and has not turned it over ‘to private parties as a forum to pronounce their own messages,’ the Sun Journal Note.
Interestingly, the American Civil Liberties Union, originally formed to defend the speech, came out in favor of raising the flag.
David Cole, ACLU Country Legal Director, said: “When governments open public property to private speakers, they must treat everyone equally. “This case is really about private citizens accessing government property to express themselves. And that access is crucial to our ability to talk to each other, to express our views and things like that. ”
But the Left Anti-Defamation League is siding with Boston.
The value to groups of ‘photographs’ of Nazi flags, Confederate flags or some other sublime banner flying over Boston City Hall should not be underestimated, the group said.
Shurtleff’s case stems from him forming the Camp Constitution, which he established and is part of a mission to “advance understanding of the country’s Judeo-Christian heritage.” The flag he was trying to fly had a cross in a blue square in a white field.
“It’s a public access flagpole,” Shurtleff told ABC. “It’s ridiculous to think that hanging a flag on a flagpole maybe for an hour or two will make people think, ‘Oh my gosh, look at the city of Boston that currently espouses the Protestant or Catholic faith. catholic.’
Attorney Doug Hallward-Driemeier, who is arguing the case for Boston, said: “The city, in its own speech, does not want to get involved in matters of religion. “People say they don’t want to fly a flag called ‘flag of Christianity,’ because that’s not the message the city itself wants to convey.”
Shurtleff countered, “I don’t know of any white nationalists who carry the Christian flag. That could have happened, but I don’t know. But this flag definitely represents Christianity and was designed by a few Sunday school teachers. Not exactly white supremacists.
“We are optimistic that they will rule in our favor and we will be allowed to raise the flag, although I understand the city will most likely cancel its flag raising events. So we’ll see what happens,” he added.
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