Yesterday, the Alabama House voted in favor of a bill so that “the right to display the Ten Commandments on property owned or administrated by a public school or public body is not restrained or abridged.” This bill was later amended to allow for other religious displays. Since this bill proposes an amendment to the Alabama constitution, it will be on the ballot for voters to decide in November.
Executive Director Randall Marshall said:
“This legislation does nothing to expand or limit our already existing religious freedoms that we enjoy under the First Amendment. Should a public school or public body want to present a constitutionally acceptable display that includes the Ten Commandments, they are already at liberty to do so. However, passing this bill will not protect a public body from litigation if they display religious symbols in a way that promotes that religion above others.
If any state entity or public school unconstitutionally posts the Ten Commandments, a successful lawsuit would cost hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars in litigation fees. This is absolutely a waste of the state’s time and potentially money, particularly when Alabama is facing so many other problems like failing public schools and overcrowded prisons.”