Trial set on Baxter County courthouse nativity scene | Arkansas Blog

Friday, September 25, 2015

Trial set on Baxter County courthouse nativity scene

Posted By on Fri, Sep 25, 2015 at 12:05 PM

click to enlarge DESSA BLACKTHORN: Plaintiff in Nativity suit. - KEVIN PIEPER/THE BAXTER BULLETIN
  • Kevin Pieper/The Baxter Bulletin
  • DESSA BLACKTHORN: Plaintiff in Nativity suit.
The Baxter Bulletin reports federal Judge Timothy Brooks has set a two-day nonjury trial Oct. 15 in Fayetteville on a lawsuit challenging the Nativity scene put up each year on the Baxter County Courthouse lawn in Mountain Home.

The scene itself is the property of Rick Spencer and some secular images, such as Santa Claus, have been added to the holiday display. But it is set up on public property (leased to the Chamber of Commerce for $1 a year) and County Judge Mickey Pendergrass has refused to allow other seasonal displays on the public lawn, including a Happy Winter Solstice banner. The preference for one religion is clear.

The Baxter Bulletin article spells out the opposing arguments in pre-trial briefs. Dessa Blackthorn, a Mountain Home businesswoman, and the American Humanist Association are plaintiffs. A similar lawsuit over the annual Nativity scene at the state Capitol won a federal court ruling that, if the Capitol lawn was to be open to a private group's nativity scene, it also had to make space for humanists' solstice display. They've co-existed for several years.

Tags: , , ,


Comments (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Trump's 'deal' on wall and dreamers is no bargain

    Donald Trump unveiled his great plan today — temporary protection for "dreamers" in return for  $5.7 billion worth of wall — but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already explained why it falls short and some on is side are already crying "no amnesty."
    • Jan 19, 2019
  • An open line for reproductive justice

    Rain drove the speakers inside to the old Senate chamber at the state Capitol, but the rally for reproductive justice went on today as does the fight in a state where the majority who assemble at the Capitol most often act to restrict women's medical rights. The line is open on this and other topics.
    • Jan 19, 2019
  • Cotton, Boozman propose estate tax bonanza for billionaires

    Tom Cotton and John Boozman are dishonestly touting legislation that is a bonanza for the super wealthy as help for small businesses and farmers.
    • Jan 19, 2019
  • More »

Readers also liked…


Most Recent Comments


© 2019 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation