ACLU Fighting To Keep God Out Of The Classroom

Photo by Kenny Eliason on Unsplash

( – ACLU sues Louisiana over a law requiring classrooms in public schools to display the Ten Commandments.

On Thursday, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) sued Louisiana over the recently passed law requiring that a poster-sized Ten Commandments with a font that is “large [and] easily readable” be displayed in every public school classroom in the state.

After Republican Governor Jeff Landry signed House Bill 71 into law on Wednesday, he foreshadowed the lawsuit, stating, “I can’t wait to be sued.”

Earlier in the day, he had described HB 71 as “one of [his] favorites.”

But the bill’s detractors haven’t shared those positive sentiments.

In a statement, ACLU, alongside their Louisiana branch, Freedom from Religion Foundation, and Americans United for Separation of Church and State, suggested that HB 71 violated “separation of church and state,” describing the law as “blatantly unconstitutional.”

The group cited the First Amendment, noting that deciding your religious beliefs “if any,” was protected by the Constitution, adding that “Politicians have no business imposing… religious doctrine,” on those attending public schools. 

The group also claimed that HB 71 “would require school officials to promote specific religious beliefs,” despite Louisiana’s public schools and communities being “religiously diverse.”

The law, which also requires a four-paragraph text explaining the historical significance of the Ten Commandments in U.S. history, does not permit state funds to be used to obtain the posters. Instead, the mandate is for the posters to be paid for by private donations.

The law also “authorizes” but does not demand displaying other items in the classrooms of K-12 public schools, including the Declaration of Independence, the Mayflower Compact, commonly called America’s “First Constitution,” and the Northwest Ordinance.

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