Though the Christians could say “Batten
Down the hatches!” here in Stratton
They’ve decided unexpectedly to follow good advice:
“You’d do best to cut your losses
By distributing the crosses—
Maybe put them in some private yards; I’m sure they’d still look nice.”
Former Mayor, Fred Abdalla
Found removal hard to swallow:
“Move our crosses? For outsiders? We’ll do nothing of the sort!”
Whose opinion was the wiser
Said the crosses were illegal, and they’d surely lose in court
Current mayor, John (Fred’s brother)
Though they share, of course, a mother,
Seem to differ in opinion (and it’s John’s that wins the day)
Seems the town can’t be religious
‘less they want to get litigious
So the Stratton village crosses, now, are gonna go away.
So, yeah, the FFRF told the Village of Stratton, Ohio that some crosses displayed on public property were illegally placed, and warned that they would sue if they were not removed… and the village is, quite sensibly and unexpectedly, removing them. Mind you, they don’t want to, and a good number of locals would rather fight their relocation… but:
“I refused to remove them at first,” Mayor John Abdalla told The Herald-Star. “I have them for safekeeping. (The foundation) even raised hell about the manger scene at the front of the building.”
After speaking with the village solicitor, Abdalla decided the crosses were to be removed. But despite the removal, the crosses will now be given to private landowners to display on their property.
“At the regular council meeting at the council of the village of Stratton, council unanimously resolved to give the crosses that were taken off the building,” Stratton Village Solicitor Frank Bruzzese told WTOV-TV. “The result will be that (the crosses) will be on display actually more visible to the public than they used to be.”
A win-win! The FFRF will have no problem with crosses on private property, and the villages who love the crosses will get to have them all the more visible! Perfect, isn’t it? Well… not quite:
[Stratton Village Soliciter, Frank] Bruzzese stated that the atheist group has not produced anyone that was offended by the crosses.
Even though the crosses will still be displayed on private land, Abdalla is not happy about the situation.
“They don’t have the guts to come up and say, ‘It’s me that’s saying this,’” Abdall told WTOV. “Everything is anonymous.”
Cos if nobody is offended by you violating the constitution, then apparently it doesn’t count. Or worse, if you an intimidate people into not vocalizing their offense at your violation of the constitution, it doesn’t count.
It doesn’t help, though, that the former mayor and current sheriff (and the current mayor’s brother) wants to put up a fight:
But his brother, long time Stratton resident and former mayor, sheriff Fred Abdalla says they must stand up for themselves.
“We are not going to bow down and say oh well take the crosses down no well fight and let the fight begin,” sheriff Abdalla said.
And town residents ought to listen to the solicitor as well:
Some residents believe the village should be able to keep the crosses there.
Dan Carman of Hopedale says he does not understand the groups motives.
“You can be whatever religion you want. I don’t understand why you have to worry about satisfying anyone not being religious,” he said.
That’s right, Dan, you can be whatever religion you want. But your village cannot. It’s that simple.