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Are religious holiday displays on public property constitutional?

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Are religious holiday displays on public property constitutional?

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It depends. Determining the constitutionality of religious holiday displays requires an analysis that is heavily “fact-driven,” meaning the slightest change in facts could completely change whether or not a holiday display is constitutional. Three U.S. Supreme Court cases deal specifically with this question. In Lynch v. Donnelly (1984) the Court held that a city-sponsored crèche in a public park did not violate the establishment clause because the display included other “secular” symbols, such as a teddy bear, dancing elephant, Christmas tree, and Santa Claus house. In Allegheny v. ACLU(1989) the Court found that a Nativity scene in a county courthouse accompanied by a banner that read “Gloria in Excelsis Deo” (“Glory to God in the Highest”), was unconstitutional because it was “indisputably religious,” rather than secular, in nature. In 1995 in Capitol Square Review & Advisory Board v. Pinette the Court held that a private group of individuals (in this case the Ku Klux Klan) could er

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