Louisiana governor signs law requiring Ten Commandments… | WORLD
Sound journalism, grounded in facts and Biblical truth | Donate

Louisiana governor signs law requiring Ten Commandments display in classrooms

Workers repaint a Ten Commandments billboard in Ohio. Associated Press/Photo by Carolyn Kaster, file

Louisiana governor signs law requiring Ten Commandments display in classrooms

On Wednesday, Louisiana Gov. Jeff Landry signed a bill requiring every public school classroom in the state to display the Biblical Ten Commandments. The law requires the commandments to be in place no later than Jan. 1, 2025.

Is that legal under the First Amendment? More than four decades ago, the U.S. Supreme Court in Stone v. Graham struck down a Kentucky law that required each classroom in the state to display the Ten Commandments. The court ruled that the statute served no secular purpose and violated the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment. That clause orders that the government will not make any law respecting an establishment of religion.

Does Louisiana have a way around that? Louisiana law requires that a three-paragraph context statement accompany the Ten Commandments in each classroom. That statement details the commandments’ historical role in American education and how textbooks and other educational materials have featured them in lessons for generations. The law also allows school officials to put up the Mayflower Compact, the Northwest Ordinance, and the Declaration of Independence alongside the Ten Commandments if they choose to do so.

Dig deeper: Read Elizabeth Moeller’s report in The Sift about the Louisiana Legislature approving the bill late last month.

Josh Schumacher

Josh is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. He’s a graduate of World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.

An actual newsletter worth subscribing to instead of just a collection of links. —Adam

Sign up to receive The Sift email newsletter each weekday morning for the latest headlines from WORLD’s breaking news team.

Please wait while we load the latest comments...