Ten Commandments

By: Jason Davis
By: Jason Davis

There are mixed signals coming out of Washington D.C. Monday night about the Ten Commandments.

Monday morning the Supreme Court ruled that two Kentucky courthouses violated the Constitution by displaying the Commandments inside of the buildings, but then the high court said it was okay for a Texas community to display the Commandments on the courthouse lawn.

On the third floor of the Walton County Courthouse the Ten Commandments hang on the wall as part of a historical display.

Walton County had its own battle several years ago with separation of church and state. That battle forced the Ten Commandments out of the courtroom and into the lobby.

Ronnie Baell, Walton County Administrator, says, "At that time the judges and the commission decided to make it a part of a historical display out the courtroom."

County Administrator Ronnie Baell says the display was carefully done not to offend any one particular religion.

"It has a lot of documents and pictures of the creation of Walton County and Defuniak Springs, but I'm glad to see that we are able to at least display them on the county and government property."

Monday's Supreme Court ruling that the Ten Commandments cannot be displayed on government property unless displayed in a historical context should not affect Walton's County's courthouse display, but some still wish to see the Commandments back where they were to start with.

Cynthia Price says, "It should still be in the courtrooms too. I don't see anything wrong with it being displayed anywhere.”

Others say there has to be a division between church and state. They don't have an issue with the Ten Commandments being on government property.

Loral Jackson says, "The courtroom is not a church, but I still think that having it, the Ten Commandments in the hallway or the lobby or on the grounds, is fine."

The country may be still divided on this issue as paralleled the court's 4-5 vote. Is it separation of church and state or simply freedom of speech?

This is the first Supreme Court ruling on the Ten Commandments in 24 years. In that 1980 ruling, the court struck down a Kentucky law requiring the Ten Commandments be displayed in public school classrooms.


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