clear
Thursday July 30th, 2015 10:14AM

Judge expected to rule in Bible verse banner suit

By The Associated Press
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- A group of teenage cheerleaders is expecting to hear Thursday from a Texas district judge whether they will be allowed to continue displaying Bible verses at high school football games.<br /> <br /> The cheerleaders at Kountze High School sued district officials told them to stop using scripture - such as, "If God is for us, who can be against us?" - on banners displayed at football games. The district banned the use of religious messages after the Freedom From Religion Foundation complained that the messages violated the First Amendment prohibition on government establishing a religion.<br /> <br /> State District Judge Steve Thomas issued an injunction allowing the cheerleaders to continue using Bible verses until he made a decision. He set a hearing for Thursday, when he was expected to rule on the cheerleaders' case.<br /> <br /> Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed court papers to intervene in the lawsuit, calling the district's prohibition an unconstitutional infringement on the cheerleaders' rights to free speech. The Texas Education Code also states that schools must respect the rights of students to express their religious beliefs.<br /> <br /> The Freedom From Religion Foundation, which is dedicated to the separation of church and state, also intervened saying in the context of a football game it was unclear who was responsible for the messages, the school or the cheerleaders.<br /> <br /> "The speech in question is government speech or, at a minimum, school-sponsored speech," the group said in court papers. "If the majority of the cheerleaders were atheists, would a court support their `right' to hold up a banner insulting Christianity or all believers? The district has every right to simply prohibit all run-through and on-field banners."<br /> <br /> Gov. Rick Perry also has spoken out in favor of the cheerleaders.<br /> <br /> "Anyone who is expressing their faith should be celebrated, from my perspective, in this day and age of instant gratification, this me-first culture that we see all too often," Perry said Wednesday. "We're a nation built on the concept of free expression of ideas. We're also a culture built on the concept that the original law is God's law, outlined in the Ten Commandments."<br />
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Doctors: Blood clot located in Clinton's head
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton developed a blood clot in her head but did not suffer a stroke or neurological damage, her doctors said Monday. They say they are confident that she will make a full recovery.
3:55PM ( 2 years ago )
Illinois Sen. Kirk to return a year after stroke
Nearly a year after a stroke left him barely able to move the left side of his body, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk is expected to climb the 45 steps to the Senate's front door this week - a walk that's significant not just for Illinois' junior senator, but also for medical researchers and hundreds of thousands of stroke patients.
3:54PM ( 2 years ago )
U.S. News
Ga. ethics legislation could end free tickets
General Assembly approval next year of a proposed ethics reform measure could endanger an important fall tradition for Georgia lawmakers - free football tickets.
6:26PM ( 2 years ago )
Abortion restrictions, tax changes loom in Ga.
Tax breaks for manufacturers and higher unemployment taxes for employers take effect with the new year in Georgia, but it remains to be seen whether the state's newest abortion restrictions will be enforced.
6:23PM ( 2 years ago )
Budget battle sends mixed signals on health care
Confused about the federal budget struggle? So are doctors, hospital administrators and other medical professionals who serve the 100 million Americans covered by Medicare and Medicaid.
6:20PM ( 2 years ago )
Politics
On Capitol Hill, GOP fighting itself instead of Democrats
When Republicans took full control of Congress this year, they were determined to show voters they could govern responsibly. Instead they've been tearing each other apart in extraordinarily public displays - to the delight of Democrats.
9:50AM ( 24 minutes ago )
Taliban confirm leader's death, choose Mullah Omar successor
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — High-ranking officials from the Afghan Taliban confirmed on Thursday the death of their leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, and said the group's top council has elected his success...
9:45AM ( 29 minutes ago )
Applications for US jobless aid rise to still-low 267,000
WASHINGTON (AP) — More people sought U.S. unemployment benefits last week, though the increase was from a very low level and the figures still point to a healthy job market.Applications for jobless ai...
8:48AM ( 1 hour ago )
Virginia's Gilmore makes 17 GOP presidential candidates
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican presidential contest has grown to 17 candidates with Wednesday's entry of Jim Gilmore.The former Virginia governor told The Associated Press earlier this month that he...
5:04AM ( 5 hours ago )
Asian stocks mixed after Fed leaves rates unchanged
BEIJING (AP) — Chinese stocks held steady Thursday following this week's turbulence while other Asian markets were mixed after the U.S. Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged at a record low.KE...
12:52AM ( 9 hours ago )