A federal judge has rejected a motion to dismiss in the lawsuit filed in Giles County, VA over the posting of the Ten Commandments in a public school there — and also rejected the attempt by the school board to force the plaintiffs to reveal their names.
U.S. District Judge Michael Urbanski said there are too many unknown facts about the case to throw it out now for legal reasons.
“Facts matter,” the judge said. “You can’t just apply a one-size-fits-all because the facts are very different” in prior cases involving the Ten Commandments.
The ruling is a setback for the Giles County School Board, which was sued in September for a display of the Ten Commandments in Narrows High School. A student at the school contends in the lawsuit that the board’s action amounted to a governmental endorsement of religion – which is prohibited by the First Amendment.
As for the identity of the student, Urbanski gave lawyers 14 days to work out the details of a protective order sought by the American Civil Liberties Union, which filed the lawsuit.
The school board is represented by Liberty Counsel, which demanded that the student who filed the complaint be identified publicly. As I wrote earlier, there is one and only one reason for such a demand — the hope that bullying and intimidation by others in the community would force them to drop the suit. In other words, thuggery in defense of Christian privilege.