UPDATE: Kountze cheerleaders can keep their religious banners for now
EAST TEXAS — A Hardin County judge has granted a temporary injuction that will allow the cheerleaders at Kountze High School to continue to display their religious banners at football games... at least for the time being.
The decision was announced on Thursday afternoon.
The banners, which are inscribed with bible verses, have been the subject of much debate over the past few weeks.
On Wednesday, Attorney General Greg Abbott and Texas Governor Rick Perry announced their support for the school.
The case will go to trial on June 24th.
Texas Attorney General Abbott made the following comments after a Hardin County judges' decision to continue to allow cheerleaders the opportunity to express their religious beliefs:
"Today’s decision is an important victory for the cheerleaders’ freedom of religion. The Constitution has never demanded that students check their religious beliefs at the schoolhouse door. Students' ability to express their religious views adds to the diversity of thought that has made this country so strong. Texas law supports students' right to freely express their religious beliefs without discrimination. We will not allow groups or individuals to wage a war on religion by trying to intimidate students into embracing a secular mindset.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation is legally wrong when it tries to bully schools into denying students their First Amendment right to share their religious beliefs. Just as schools cannot command students to support a particular belief, those same schools cannot silence a student’s religious belief. The Constitution does not give preference to those who have no religious beliefs over those who do."