In an effort to beautify the city, officials in Bloomfield, New Mexico decided to create a public forum to give private citizens the opportunity to pay for and erect historical monuments on the City Hall Lawn. Eventually a variety of privately-funded monuments were displayed, including monuments containing the Declaration of Independence, Gettysburg Address, Bill of Rights, and the Ten Commandments. Each monument included the name of the donors and explains the displayed document’s significance in America's history.
Two individuals complained that the Ten Commandments monument violated the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution and filed a lawsuit against the City of Bloomfield.
In July 2017, ADF attorneys and co-counsel, Wilmar Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr LLP, petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the case. Unfortunately, in October 2017 the high court denied review of the case.
What's at stake
The public display of historical religious monuments by private individuals on government property
The preservation of freedom of speech in the face of one "offended" person’s demands for censorship
Our role in this case
Alliance Defending Freedom represents the City of Bloomfield, New Mexico in its defense of the monument forum.