Kondrat’yev v. City of Pensacola, Florida (U.S.C.A Eleventh Circuit, 2017)

Separation of Church & State

11th Circuit Court of Appeals ,

Separation of Church & State

At issue in this case is the constitutionality of a 34-foot Latin cross displayed in a public city park. The cross is the focal point for an amphitheater designed for hosting worship services on Easter. Although the lower court begrudgingly ruled that the due the display’s clear religious purpose it violates the Establishment Clause to the First Amendment, its decision extensively criticizes long-standing Establishment Clause precedents, which the court was obligated to enforce, and presents a revisionist history of the Clause. In addition to explaining why this public display of the cross plainly violates the Establishment Clause, the amicus brief provides an in-depth discussion on the history, purpose and original understanding of the Clause.