Easter Art
Sunrise Service
Laguna Beach, CA.

With Regard to the Rejection by the Laguna Beach City Planning Commission of the Easter Bannerrequest to hang the banner in front of the Easter Sunrise Service Venue prior to the Community Event.

Letters to the Editor

Email Comments and Responses




Banned Banner Email Responses
(names of the senders are kept private and all personal information has been edited from the emails. Only the text pertaining to the Laguna Beach City Planning Commission's decission has been reprinted and displayed below)



“kind hearts lead to gas chambers”

Wow, that is crazy. In one hand I am sorry your work has been banned but in another it seems that more people may be reached and challenged by the publicity.  Keep me posted on what is going on.  I would love to collaborate or assist you in a project one day. Thanks for keeping me posted. I will pray that God would use this in a huge way.  God bless you Jeff



Wow, Jeff!
I don't understand the mentality.  Well, to be truthful, I think I do.  Working in, and spending time in Berkeley, I have come to realize that there is quite a double standard being displayed with regard to "tolerance".  I keep arriving at the same conclusion when I ask myself why it exists.  FEAR, and SELFISHNESS, manifest by HYPOCRISY. 

I'm sorry that you're running up against the same thing, and, at the same time, glad a Man of Truth, like yourself, is carrying the torch.

Keep it up! 



boy o boy that is just ridiculous!
why is it that in today's society one can say
the four letter "F" word without rebuke
but not the the five letter " F" word

........ FAITH  

btw the painting is beautiful : )



Although, I am very curious as to what reason(s) was/were given for forbidding the public display? My wee opinion.......Laguna Beach, (traditionally and primarily a left-winged community), would oppose any sort of public display which celebrates Christianity and/or religion in general. (Including a nativity scene at Christmastime.) It seems that many of Laguna's citizens may believe that such art which conspicuously indicates membership of a religion must be forbidden, advocating strict secularity. (Probably the reason why even more "discreet signs" of religious affiliation, such as the cross and the star of David are disallowed.) Despite being more of a liberal than a conservative, I find myself questioning how the ban of such "religious matter" is not considered an anti-constitutional attack on personal freedom. ??

Perhaps it is more a problem/fear of religious integration. In other words, any drift away from secularity, and people begin to fret the introduction of a sort of anti-Laguna lifestyle/existence..



Lets put crosses all over the place in this one horse town. Banning your cross JUST MAKES ME SICK!

....FEEL IT WORTHY!!!!!???
For years Emerald Bay had a policy of "NO JEWS" and of course you didn't even have to say NO BLACKS. All the way into the late 60's there was a sign at the bowling greens a Hiesler Park that said NO JEWS. Not until a screeeeeming public outrage came down on the "City Fathers" did this all change. This kind of MADNESS has just manifested itself again in the comments of these insane people that are stopping the display of this piece.

Flippantly they just blurted out their anti-religious remarks and what is worse is they now try to cover it up with justification of "oversize" and "we don't know if there is a rule" and "oh ya, Church and State and all that" so they can censure at their whim. FORGET freedom of expression and speech! that's just some Constitutional thing that doesn't apply to them. All religions in this town should run these people out of town on a rail! The Festival of Arts of all groups should just GO INSANE at this kind of atrocity. AND ARTISTS being told he cannot put up and ART PIECE???!!! The Festival of Arts write checks to the City of Laguna for over $550,000 A YEAR to rent the grounds so they can put on events. THEY SHOULD BE ABLE TO PUT UP WHAT EVER THEY WANT! THAT IS OVER $60 dollars AN HOUR for the year to be there!

This chalkboard monitor, ART POLICE, RELIGION POLICE and rules police madness has just completely stepped over the line on this one. People in this town are SICK of all the petty rules and restriction that has given the City a license to use legalized EXTORTION! Ask any builder, dog owner, artist, homeowner, frizbee thrower, skateboarder, skooter driver, YOU NAME IT and there is some INSANE LAW brought to you by LOCAL GOVERNMENT. Forget the national elections! Your rights are being taken away from you piece by piece by 5 people in City Hall and all their little chalkboard monitor commissions RIGHT UNDER YOUR NOSE!

It is time to say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH DAMM IT! This all has to END RIGHT HERE AND NOW! This DEMANDS national exposure because we are not the only town this is happening in. This insanity of local government making up what ever rules it wants when ever it wants is a massive threat to freedom of speech and expression. Every action ANYONE does has to be approved by some commission or some city employee....this is just insane and it is getting worse. Conditional Use was a good idea that has now turned into a Mafia type extortion control. Business owners live in fear of doing "the right thing" because so thing they may do wrong will piss off someone at the City and their conditional use permit will get pulled. Home owners, if they have enough money can suffer through all the insanity and time of trying maybe get approved by some commission. Artists are kept in line by little treats thrown to them if you are good boys and girls and cooperate with the "guide lines of good judgment."

AAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!! I have had it! Stand up and fight! This is only the tip of the iceberg and this whole process is against everything America STANDS FOR! DO LET IT WIN! Time for some more SCREEEEMING PUBLIC OUTRAGE!



Dear Jeff:
Thanks for sending me the article regarding your banner for the Easter Sunrise Service.  I am sorry to hear of the board's decision, but not at all surprised.

Everyone is so worried about being Politically Correct any more and especially so in a town like Laguna Beach, that I didn't expect them to be reasonable. There is no reason that is logical to me that your banner would be offensive to Jews or Muslims or Buddhists or what-have-you.  The board could allow the Jewish community to put up a banner with a Star of David on it for Passover, and a banner with whatever the Muslim put on it for its Holiday and a banner for Buddhists for its holiday.    In fact, it is very difficult any more to do anything like that.  Thus people who are atheist are now in control of our country.  That, of course, is NOT according to our Constitution.




It is great to hear from you, although I certainly do wish it was under different circumstances.

Work has had me traveling a lot, therefore I have not heard of this recent uproar!

What an outrage!  I mean, if people are actually going to *celebrate* Easter, then they should acknowledge that a cross is representative of the holiday.  Thinking Easter is merely a time for rabbits, and eggs, and candy is just a bunch of nonsense.  I am very confident that this ruling will be overturned come 2005.

Let me know where a letter should be directed. I am more than happy to help you out with that.



Dear Jeff,
Wow, this is amazing! Hopefully the notices in the papers will be seen by more people than the banner would have been! Did you intend the lighter strokes to represent Christ hanging on the cross?  The upper one is suggestive of a bowed head. A bent leg may be suggested on the lower portion of the cross, and two lighter portions could suggest Christ's arms. Are the three red circles suggestive of the nails in His hands and feet? You do beautiful work! Do you think their decision was affected by Mel Gibson's Passion?



This is an outrage! Can you imagine this beautiful  cross is not welcome at this Laguna Beach Easter event? Time to wake up, people



jeff, too bad how confused our people have let themselves become, when every obscene rock star can wear a cross, when tax funded art museums get to show the BLESSED MOTHER AND CHILD with animal dung all over, when the cross or JESUS pictures appear in violent murder/rape scenes on TV and movies, but your banner is banned. feel free to hang it off my Dana Point balcony any time. HAPPY SPRING , blessed LENT, and HOLY EASTER to you. GOD BLESS.



FYI, I forwarded your link with an explanation to the important people at the office in Atlanta, so that they are aware of the ripples our sunrise service is having. Cool stuff.



Can you believe it?  Who made that rule and because of who would be upset? I would never be offended by a Jewish Star in Laguna or a Star and Crescent or a YIN YANG!   I know we all want to say "up the yin yang to 'somebody', but know we have to accept this illogical thinking based on misinformation. 



Jeff...I wish that I could honestly say I was surprised at the decision of the planning commission...But in today's world, it just fits in with the ban on school prayer, the effort of Mr. Nedow to get the "Under God" out of the Pledge of Allegiance, and now the removal of your beautiful banner. At least you are traveling with some mighty big "companions."

I think what is needed is a big 18 wheeler, with the back all rigged up to produce a massive recall election on an instance notice. It would be mobile and could travel from city to city and manage the recall, until the election is over and then move on to the next one. In time, the city fathers might just get the idea that they were elected to represent the majority of the people, not the vocal minority!!! 

Your banner is breathtakingly beautiful and should be flown from every home that has a flag pole from which to hang it.

 Keep up your great work, it only gets better.

 Love and prayers to you,



oh how sad--pray for them---they know not what they do. ...and the passion made 300 million???
Somebody out there likes a cross.
Keep working.



Hi Jeff,
Wow! The battle is on over the cross and the crucified one!  It may be that it is getting closer to the time when your project will be unvieled by God and the national situation. The impact of The Passion of the Christ is astounding.  I've been hearing some amazing stories of the impact of the movie in the Muslim world.  I understand that Yassar Arafat and his leadership had a private screening and that all over the Middle East theatres are canceling other movies to show it.  The attack that the enemy tried to use that it was anti-semitic has actually gained the attention of the Muslims.  I heard that there have beenshowings "filled with weeping Muslims" and that the demand for New Testaments has gone up marketly since the film was released.

Pray for the same thing to happen in Laguna over the painting.  Pray for God's counter attack. He might be setting things up for your paintings to be released through the reaction released against it.  The book of Acts and church history is full of this advance through persecution.  For sure your painting got seen by more people in Laguna area than ever before.

 Bless you friend.
In the Fire of His love,



Hey Jeff,
How ridiculous....the enemy at work!   I will pass along....definitely is worthy of awareness!!
Thanks for sharing the article.    I will pray the decision gets overturned at city council.


Jeff! Glad to see you're stirring things up in the republic of LB. Suffering for the sake of Christ - more power to you brother... 



What a rip!!!  Yeah!! Tolerant for everything but Jesus.  Thanks for the article.  Used one of your cards again on Wednesday.  Always think of you and pray for you when I do.  Keep me posted on your life.  



Amen! I love this kind of stuff.



Greetings Jeff,
Sorry it took me so long to post back. I'm saddened and grieved to think that Sabo caused this to happened, but I suppose it comes with the territory, if ya know what I mean. God said in Amos that there will come a day when His word is removed from the earth. It's going to happen if we like it or not, we cannot give up hope though. Keep it ALL in prayer and live a righteous life according to scripture, regardless of those around us, pastors included. I've always said, "follow theMaster(God), not the pastor." We ALL blow it! I will keep this in my prayers and do what I can.




People Respond


Newspaper Articles

Article 1
The Laguna Beach Independent


Article 2
The Coastline Pilot




Further Links

The Laguna Beach Independent

Contacts Laguna Beach Planning Commission and City Council