Court reverses order to remove Ten Commandments monument
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- A federal appeals court voted 11-2 to reverse an order by a panel of the court to remove a Ten Commandments monument from a Plattsmouth city park.
The court cited the June 27 U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Texas Capitol.
In the new Nebraska ruling, Judge Pasco Bowman said the Plattsmouth monument, which shows the commandments text with two Jewish stars of David, acknowledges "the role of religion in our nation's heritage."
Similar memorials "are replete throughout our country," he said, citing the Library of Congress, National Archives, Department of Justice, Court of Appeals and House of Representatives buildings in Washington.
Bowman noted that no roads or walkways lead from a parking lot, 200 yards away, to the monument, that the biblical words face away from recreational equipment, picnic tables, benches and shelters and that the words cannot be read by passing motorists.
Lawyers for Plattsmouth had argued that the monument was simply a gift from a prominent civic group, not an endorsement of religion.
The 1965 Ten Commandments monument in Plattsmouth is among hundreds donated to U.S. cities and counties by the Fraternal Order of Eagles.