(Photo Courtesy of Fox News)

Here we go again.

This time an atheist group is offended because New York City has named a street to honor seven brave firefighters who gave their lives in the tragic attacks on 9-11. A new street sign was erected just days ago outside the Brooklyn firehouse where the heroes once served.  The name of the street:  “Seven in Heaven Way.”

That name – that reference to “heaven” – has resulted in an outcry from an atheist group claiming they are insulted by the name, and are demanding that the street sign come down.

“There should be no signage or displays of religious nature in the public domain,” said Ken Bronstein, president of New York City Atheists. “It’s really insulting to us.” Bronstein told Fox News Radio that his organization was especially concerned with the use of the word “heaven.” “We’ve concluded as atheists there is no heaven and there’s no hell,” he said.

The fact is there are religious names for numerous cities, towns and streets all across America – including New York City.  I assume the atheist organization would want all of those names changed, too.

The claim that somehow “Seven in Heaven Way” violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment is absurd. Acknowledging religion is not an endorsement of religion, and to suggest that this street name somehow crosses the constitutional line of establishing a religion is nonsense.

I debated this issue on Sean Hannity’s program on Fox News.  You can watch that interview here.

New York City officials say they have no plans to remove or change the sign.  The atheist organization says if it is not removed, it may consider filing a lawsuit.

Just when you think you’ve heard it all . . .

More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

Last Friday’s standing-room only hearing before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission was among the most dramatic I’ve witnessed.  There was outrage – outrage not just from me as I declared the State Department “AWOL” in our quest to free an American Pastor, Saeed Abedini — a U.S. citizen — captured by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard […]

One of the most important things we can do is keep the story of Pastor Saeed Abedini in the spotlight. This U.S. citizen is facing eight years in a deadly Iranian prison, convicted for his Christian faith. We know that the situation he faces gets worse day by day. He remains cut-off from speaking with […]

It’s unlike any judicial system in the world. On Monday, American Pastor Saeed Abedini went to court in Iran with his attorney to address charges of attempting to undermine the Iranian government. The real problem: he converted from Islam to Christianity 13 years ago and started working with house-churches in Iran. Pastor Saeed and his […]

An American Pastor is being held in Iran’s most notorious prison – Pastor Saeed, a U.S. citizen, has been told that he “will hang” because of his Christian faith. And, now the Iranian government has put this case on the fast track – and scheduled a trial that’s just days away. After sustaining painful beatings […]