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RI Attorney General Adds His Support To Keep Memorial Intact

Statement comes hours before rally to preserve memorial, web site in face of demands of Freedom From Religion Foundation.

In a release distributed today, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin applauded  Mayor Leo Fontaine, the Woonsocket City Council and the City of Woonsocket for gearing to fight a challenge demanding removal of religious symbols from the Place Jolicoeur memorial and Fire Department website.

The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) wants a cross removed from the monument and the Firefighter's Prayer and image of an angel removed from the website.

Kilmartin's support is added to that of Retired RI Adjutant General Reginald Centracchio, who has organized a rally to support keeping the monument at Fire Department Headquarters as-is, to be held at the site today, 4:30 p.m.

Last night, the City Council considered a resolution to set up an account for the defense of the memorial and web site

“The FFRF apparently has taken the myopic view that because it saw a cross, the monument is solely a religious symbol and should be removed,” said Kilmartin. “By taking this view, they clearly have chosen to diminish the monument’s significance in honoring the sacrifices the Jolicoeur and Gagne family members made in dying while defending our country, ironically so
groups like the FFRF can even exist. This monument transcends religion and the call to remove it is an affront to all veterans. Our national cemeteries are filled with grave markers including the cross and the Star of David. Should they be removed also?

Like the Jolicoeur and Gagne families did in World War I and World War II, it is time for us to join together to fight zealotry, and I add my voice to those of the citizens of Woonsocket and beyond in defending true American values and the intent of the United States Constitution,” said Kilmartin.

Russell Archambault May 06, 2012 at 10:37 PM
mr. dilberth . i may agree about separation church, (religion) and state. Thats what we were founded on. i have a hard time understanding atheist. so i should study its meaning. and i might agree with you on several things that have changed by FFRF ( like the christmas tree or prayer on school property. Thinking it out, for fairness for every religion or non religion. So here goes my question, when you see that monument, do only see a CROSS a "symbol" as i might agree a religious symbol, or can you understand why that whole thing the "monument" was placed there in the first place including the cross? so does this symbol in its purpose for this situation, still pose a problem for you. do you think that removing what belongs truly to the men that cross represents would dishonor them ( Fair and sincere question). I looked up religious symbols on the internet. for example, 5 point star, generals use it, anchor, exactly how the navy uses it,and our state flag. apple, butterfly, daisy, dogwood tree. how would you handle, removing those situations. thank you in advance, if you are willing to answer, respectfully.so i may understand your point of view
Tommy Tutone May 07, 2012 at 12:45 AM
Mr.Archambault: "The truth shall set you free,then it'll make you miserable".I'm not sure who said that but it fits.I mean no disrespect,all i know is that when politicians show up for an event like this they're doing it to look like heroes while they pick our pockets.You may like people to pick your pocket,but i don't.The deficits today are criminal,they're required by law to stay within budget and they don't.I'm done with the blame game and excuses,i want them off my back.I find it very easy to separate the religious issues from the economic ones. It all looks like manipulation to me,the sickest kind,using people's beliefs against them with the intention to distract while they push their criminal legislation through in Providence.I wouldn't have even commented if no politicians showed up.I chose "dead in the water" to represent the city of Woonsocket and i learned a long time ago that it's best to stay as anonymous as possible on the internet,not just in this forum.As for being a "coward",you're free to call me what you want but i won't back down from my belief that we're all being ripped off.I can't think of anything more disrecpectful or dehumanizing than stealing hard pressed people's money,legal or otherwise. -Dead
Russell Archambault May 07, 2012 at 01:31 AM
dead in the water i have to agree with your frustration on many topics. we are all being torn apart. I respect your view on the religious side, and completely troubled with my own,and disgusted on the Hippocrates who hind behind it. I have many friends from all religions, but admit that i dont know anyone without a religion. I always stated that i would never fight over religion. Now I see that I even got sucked into it. The problem with all of this is that there were more that one issue going on at the same time with the monument. you are correct, lots of bad decisions were made and now its time" to pay the piper". we might be closer in our views, just express it equally in different ways.who is right or wrong.neither, when we are all loosing!
Joe The Plumber May 07, 2012 at 02:02 PM
@Dead In The Head...... Another conspiracy theory nut.
Tommy Tutone May 07, 2012 at 07:25 PM
@Plumber's Crack......Another sheep being led to slaughter.

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