The millionaire great-grandson of Henry Ford used his influence to force a Michigan church to take down part of its pro-life display this month.
Edsel B. Ford II complained to the City of Grosse Pointe that the display at St. Paul on the Lake Catholic Church was ugly and a “blight” on the community, The Federalist reports. Ford retired from the board of Ford Motor last year, according to ABC News.
The city responded “immediately” by ordering the church to take down its pro-life sign or replace it with a smaller one to comply with a city zoning ordinance, according to the report.
A photo of the St. Paul on the Lake display shows a large sign that reads “64,000,000 lost U.S. lives” surrounded by white crosses representing the lives of aborted babies on the church lawn. The sign also displays a phone number and website for women seeking pregnancy help.
Ford, whose wife is on the board of Michigan Planned Parenthood, apparently has complained about the pro-life display several times.
“Once again, I am writing to you with dismay concerning St. Paul Catholic Church’s use of their front lawn on Lake Shore Road to place signs and crosses advocating their political/moral/ethical position against abortion,” Ford told the city, according to the Detroit Free Press.
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The millionaire businessman claimed the “signs and crosses … diminish the character” and “beauty” of the local neighborhood as well as the “quality of life for residents and visitors.”
Ford also cuttingly accused the city of giving “special dispensation to St. Paul Catholic Church to display these controversial signs and crosses,” according to the report.
Here’s more from the report:
According to the Detroit Free Press, City Manager Shane Reeside “took immediate action” upon the letter’s receipt last week. …
The church was ultimately ordered by Reeside to trim one of the signs into compliance with municipal code restricting billboard sizes. The display will also be taken down on Wednesday as originally planned to comply with city codes on temporary demonstrations.
A church spokesperson told the newspaper they always strive to carefully follow laws and ordinances when they set up their displays.
October is Respect Life month, and many churches and pro-life organizations have displays with crosses or flags and signs that remind people of the devastation of abortion and the value of babies in the womb. In recent years, many have been vandalized or stolen.
Ford’s complaint is consistent with his family’s long history of abortion advocacy. The Ford Foundation, an organization founded by Henry Ford’s son Edsel, has donated millions of dollars to leftist and pro-abortion causes for many years, including the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, SisterSong and the Center for Reproductive Rights.