For over 90 years, Mt. Soledad National Park in San Diego has been the site of an annual Easter celebration. The 29-foot cross resting on a 14-foot platform (providing a total elevation of 43 feet), built in 1954, is actually the third Mt. Soledad Easter Cross.
Although the cross is hosted on government property at taxpayer expense, it was always advertised as an Easter monument until 1989, when civil libertarians pointed out the obvious church-state concerns. Religious conservatives and other local fans of the cross immediately rechristened it a war memorial and surrounded it with plaques listing the names of 1,700 deceased veterans whose names were submitted for inclusion by relatives. This makes it a somewhat strange location for Easter services, but allows supporters to paint opponents of the cross as heartless secularists intent on desecrating the legacy of deceased soldiers who, if they were to look down on Mt. Soledad today, would probably wonder why plaques bearing their names had been affixed to Easter decoration.
After losing 16 years of church-state lawsuits, supporters successfully had the land surrounding the Easter Cross transferred to federal jurisdiction on August 14th (with a little help from Congress and a signature from President Bush). Now the ACLU and Jewish War Veterans have filed a new suit asking that the cross be moved, and the process has begun all over again.