Wednesday, 08 June 2011

Tenn Lawmakers Pass Resolution Urging Counties to Display Ten Commandments

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By a 98-0 vote the Tennessee House of Representatives has passed a resolution urging “all Tennessee counties to allow the Ten Commandments to be posted in their respective courthouses.” Sponsored by State Representative Todd Watson, H.R. 107 “marks a defiant stand against attempts in recent years to exclude references to Christianity from courthouses across the U.S.,” reported the Christian Post.

The resolution notes that “the underpinnings of our system of government are rooted in a steadfast belief in Almighty God,” and recalls that “the Founders’ desire to publicly acknowledge God as the source of America’s strength and direction is reflected in many of our founding documents and practices, from the Mayflower Compact and the Declaration of Independence to the National Motto and Thanksgiving Day celebrations….”

Since the very beginnings of our nation, the resolution continues, “federal, state, and local governing bodies have continued to invoke Divine guidance and celebrate the role religion has played in American life by issuing faith-based proclamations and opening each legislative session with prayer and supplication, a practice instituted by the First United States Congress and which has continued unbroken for more than two centuries….”

The resolution notes that throughout history both citizens and elected officials “have deeply respected the Ten Commandments,” and declares that it is “imperative that these revered tablets continue to grace our public buildings, as reminders to this generation and the next of the vital role the Ten Commandments and its Author have played in shaping our great republic.”

In light of the fact that nearly 90 percent of Tennessee counties have already adopted similar resolutions acknowledging the historical significance of the Ten Commandments, and “pledging to defend their right to display them,” states the resolution, all members of Tennessee’s state representatives, with the exception of two abstaining members, signed on to the official covenant stating:

Be it resolved by the House of Representatives of the One Hundred Seventh General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, that this body hereby urges all Tennessee counties to allow the Ten Commandments to be posted in their respective courthouses.

Mathew Staver, dean of the Liberty University School of Law and founder of the conservative legal advocacy group Liberty Counsel, noted that the Ten Commandments “are part of the fabric of our country and helped shape our laws. They are as much at home in a display about the foundations of law as stars and stripes are in the American flag,” Noting the Tennessee legislators’ admirable effort, Staver said that the “Founding Fathers would be outraged that we are even debating the constitutionality of the Ten Commandments.”

Nearly 10 years ago, as county courthouses around the nation were being legally pressured by the ACLU and other secular groups to remove Ten Commandments monuments that had stood for 50 years and more, Alabama Judge Roy Moore took a lead role in the fight as he staunchly refused to remove a Ten Commandments display from his own courtroom, and later fought the ACLU over a Ten Commandments monument that graced the halls of the Alabama Supreme Court building.

Judge Moore, who now heads up the conservative organization Foundation for Moral Law, applauded the efforts of the Tennessee lawmakers to defend America’s godly heritage, telling The New American: “The recognition of God and His Law is always appropriate in our country, which Thomas Jefferson said in the Declaration of Independence was entitled to exist by the ‘law of nature and of nature’s God.’” Moore noted that absent the recognition of God “we have no fixed standard for national morality and virtue, which George Washington said was the ‘necessary spring of popular government.’”

Added the Alabama judge, “Today we see government out of control — both at the state and national level. I appreciate the Legislature of Tennessee approving such an appropriate and necessary resolution. I hope that other states follow the example set by Tennessee.”

Photo: The Ten Commandments on a monument on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol

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