OUR VIEW: UHP markers a good solution

Feb 29 2012 - 4:13pm

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Crossroads of the West
Crossroads of the West

We believe that crosses along Utah's public highways that honored UHP Troopers who have died are not a violation of the Constitution. Nevertheless, the U.S. Court of Appeals has said otherwise, and the U.S. Supreme Court has declined to review that decision. The courts should be respected and the crosses have been appropriately removed.

We support House Bill 182, which would place nine-foot-high signs along the public highways to honor the Troopers. The bill, sponsored by Top of Utah legislators, Rep. Brad Wilson, R-Kaysville, and Rep. Stuart Adams, R-Layton, passed the Utah House without a dissenting vote and should sail through the Senate and be signed into law by Gov. Gary Herbert. We can't imagine any activist organization or persons still being opposed to honoring the sacrifice of law enforcement officers so long as the religious symbols are gone.

The cost for the signs are virtually nil. According to Rep. Wilson, the cost to make the signs is about $20,000. If that sum is not allocated, there is a provision for private donations to cover the cost.

Given the disappointment many feel for losing the current crosses, it's a safe bet that the $20,000 could be easily raised.

Last year, more than 20 Troopers were injured on public highways. It's a dangerous job that deserves respect from all of us. One driver's momentary carelessness can kill a Trooper handling his routine duties.

As for the crosses that caused all the controversy, they will be placed on private property as close to the original locations as possible, said UHP Trooper Chad McWilliams, UHPA president. However, there will be a different logo on the crosses, instead of the state's beehive.

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