Religious State Officials Are Being Extra


Cassie Volkin, Writer

A state law passed Wednesday allows schools to display the Ten Commandments on public property and schools, and citizens on both sides of the aisle are finding this measure a little, well, extra.

“Allowing this kind of freedom to schools takes away others’ freedom of religion,” said Dalia Altubuh, a definitively not Christian student. Though the law itself does not by any means require schools to display or promote the Christian and Jewish moral laws, there were undeniable religious motives to the law’s creation. Some legislators believed that the bill was a distraction from real issues, but Rep. Ed Henry argued that “the root cause of most of the problems that you address … happen because … [people] left God. They forgot who Christ is in their life.”

All three Democrats on the House State Government Committee opposed the bill, with Rep. Barbara Boyd stating her fears that it was a step towards legalizing Ten Commandments monuments such as the one removed under then-Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, according to Given Roy Moore’s controversial reputation, it is understandable that a law bearing similarities to one of his former actions would cause concerns.

“If we’re going to post the Ten Commandments, I’m okay with it, as long as we can also post other religious beliefs that reflect the beliefs of the student body,” said Mrs. Panagos. “We want all students to feel accepted.”

Like many, she believes that this law is a largely unnecessary measure, and if this freedom is not allowed to other beliefs, the result will be religious animosity and claims of First Amendment violations. Alabama is a largely Christian state, even more than most, but it should be respected that America doesn’t have an actual official religion, and the advocacy of a religion by public officials, even with the best of intentions, can result in violations of civil rights.

For the sake of respecting all of our nation’s people, and all of their peaceful beliefs, this law should be met only with a dismissive nod or a roll of the eyes, and so far, that is exactly the reception it has received.