I would hate to admit that Italy has more freedom of religion than the United States, where we like to brag about our First Amendment rights. But a recent newspaper article caught my eye and I want to share it with you. If you've been listening to my broadcasts, you know that I've given many commentaries about the effort of the ACLU and the atheists to remove the cross and all representations of the Ten Commandments from public places, including courthouses, public grounds, public schools, and even mountains.
Well, this same issue came up in a lawsuit in Italy. A lower court of the European Union ruled in 2009 in favor of a parent who said she was "offended" by the crosses in Italy's schools. She demanded that they be removed. The decision was appealed to the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights. A conservative public-interest law firm in the United States, called the Alliance Defense Fund, persuaded the judges to allow 33 members of the European Parliament to intervene in this lawsuit. On March 18, the top court of the European Union reversed that ruling, holding that there was no violation of the European Convention on Human Rights, and that Italy was within its rights to display the crosses in the classrooms.
This was an important case because liberals in the United States have been trying to tell U.S. judges they should consult foreign law when deciding U.S. cases. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor have made speeches urging our judges to consult foreign law. Many U.S. cases have been filed in which some person claims he is "offended" at seeing a cross on display, whether in a courthouse or on a mountain, and I'm glad that they cannot now cite the European Union as authority for anti-Christian decisions.
Listen to the radio commentary here: