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Supreme Court May Decide To Hear Ten Commandments Case:
Decision could be this year’s blockbuster church/state case
D.C. – As early as Monday, the United States Supreme Court may agree
to hear a Kentucky case involving the display of the Ten Commandments together
with other historical documents in school buildings in Harlan County, Kentucky,
and in courthouses in McCreary and Pulaski County, Kentucky. The three counties
are represented by Liberty Counsel, a nonprofit litigation, education, and
policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity
of human life and the traditional family. If the Court grants review, the
decision in this case will prove to be vitally important on the issue of
the constitutionality of displays containing the Ten Commandments. The Court
has not granted review in a Ten Commandments case since 1980, but review
of the issue this term seems more likely considering there are currently
five pending cases before the High Court on the issue of the constitutionality
of Ten Commandments displays, and lower courts have issued conflicting decisions.
Kentucky case involves two courthouses in Pulaski and McCreary Counties
which displayed the Ten Commandments, the Declaration of Independence, the
Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, and other historical documents. The Harlan
County School Board created a similar display which also includes a limited
public forum where the community can post additional historical documents.
The display in all three counties is intended to display historical documents
and symbols that played a significant role in the founding of our system
of law and government.
surrounding the Ten Commandment displays has brought the issue to courthouses
across the country. Courts are sharply divided concerning the constitutionality
of such displays and the conflicting rulings confuse citizens and townships
regarding the legality of historical documents which have religious references.
Currently, 4 federal circuit courts and one state Supreme Court hold that
displays of Ten Commandments are constitutional, while 3 federal circuit
courts hold that such displays are unconstitutional.
Staver, President and General Counsel of Liberty Counsel, stated, “We
are hopeful the Supreme Court will accept review of this important case.
Lower courts are hopelessly confused over the constitutionality of governmental
displays of the Ten Commandments.” Staver continued, “The Ten
Commandments belong in a display of historical documents important to the
foundation of our country. American history would be incomplete without
reference or acknowledgement of the significant role religion, including
the Ten Commandments, has played in our founding, history, and legal jurisprudence.
Those who seek to remove the Ten Commandments from public display are engaging
in the worst kind of historical revisionism.”