"This cross is now a part of the official WTC memorial. No other religions or philosophies will be honored. It will just be a Christian icon, in the middle of OUR memorial,” Dave Silverman, president of American Atheists, said in a release.I think the historic significance of the cross justifies its inclusion in the museum. Human beings cannot construct equivalent monuments for other religions, even if it were, in fact, legally required. Silverman's argument assumes that a historical museum is a free-speech forum that must be open to the speech of all groups, but that's not what a museum is.
Silverman added that the memorial must allow atheists and other belief groups to include their own displays of equal size. For the past several years the cross has been housed at St. Peter's church. On Saturday it was permanently moved to the 9/11 Memorial Museum after a ceremonial blessing at Zuccotti Park. The 9/11 Memorial Museum, which will officially open next year, said its mission is to tell the history of the attacks through artifacts like the cross.
"This steel remnant became a symbol of spiritual comfort for the thousands of recovery workers who toiled at ground zero, as well as for people around the world," said 9/11 Memorial President Joe Daniels. "In the historical exhibition, the cross is part of our commitment to bring back the authentic physical reminders that tell the story of 9/11 in a way nothing else can.”
Sometimes organizations file lawsuits not because they think they will win but to gain publicity for their cause. This is a case, however, of an organization drawing bad publicity, though, isn't it? I suppose this group seeks favor among a fairly small percentage of the population. If that is the goal, outraging the majority could feel like a good thing.