Lawmakers take stance against federal courts

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Alabama legislators took a strong stance against the federal courts Tuesday when House members

passed an amendment that allows the posting of the Ten Commandments in public school buildings.

Although the measure must pass the Senate and ultimately Alabama voters in a referendum, House members sent a positive message to the courts and the children in their 89-0 vote.

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A handful of court decisions around the country in recent months has rekindled the church-and-state debate in the federal courts.

One side of the argument takes that position that all references to &uot;God&uot; in public buildings

violate the doctrine.

They other side of that argument will say it's protected by the Constitution.

In Alabama schools, would students be required to read the Ten Commandments? No, but they would be available for a student read at his or her leisure.

Such access to morality - leaving aside religion - could have a tremendous impact on the next generation of Alabamians. Certainly its absence

would be disastrous.

Ask school teachers, principals and counselors about their students' moral standards today and you're likely to hear that those standards are very low. The teachers, principals and counselors also will likely to tell you that any exposure to moral values is a step in the right direction.

While the measure still has a long way to go, and could ultimately be decided in court, we believe the House vote sends a clear signal to the courts and to the rest of the country that Alabama wants a moral compass and that the Ten Commandments will be that guide.