Van Zandt County Republican wants Ten Commandments back in Texas classrooms

Rep. Dan Flynn

Tis the season for prefiling bills for the upcoming session of the Texas Legislature, and Van Republican Dan Flynn has filed a measure that would allow teachers in Texas public schools to post copies of The 10 Commandments on their classroom walls. (For those of you who don’t know, Van is a very small little town about 70 miles east Dallas on I-20. It is in Van Zandt County, for which Canton is the county seat. I worked there years and years ago as editor of the town’s weekly newspaper, The Van Progress.)

Flynn’s bill says that school board trustees may not stop copies of the commandments from being posted in “prominent” locations in classrooms, according to a story in the Sunday issue of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Flynn also says the measure is a “patriotic exercise” intended to teach students about history and principles.

(Funny, I see it as an unconstititutional effort to impose specific religious views.)

Flynn told the Star-Telegram:

“This is necessary to protect teachers who have the desire to establish that the country’s historical background is based on Judeo-Christian traditions. This might be a reassuring step to the people that we are wanting to maintain and hold on to those historical findings of how our country was founded. And anything that helps build the morals of our young people would be helpful. For too long, we’ve forsaken what our Judeo-Christian heritage has been. Our rights do come from God, not from government.”

Oh, and Flynn was apparently distressed that school officials are not allowed to publicly pray for students athletes before school sports events.

Of course, there have been numerous court cases involving the Ten Commandments on public property and in government buildings. And a in a lot of those cases, the courts have said it isn’t allowed. Although, as the Star-Telegram notes, there was a case just five years ago in which the Supreme Court said a granite monument with the Ten Commandments on the grounds of the Texas Capitol is not unconstitutional because it didn’t mean that Texas government officials were promoting religion.

Flynn said his bill has gotten support among conservatives, but acknowledges that if it passes the Legislature it is likely to face legal challenges.

—  admin

Drawing Dallas

Richard Guy might look like a modern-day Viking, but he’s really just a homebody

MARK STOKES  | Illustrator mark@markdrawsfunny.com

What a Guy!

Name and age: Richard Guy, 47

Spotted at: Lee Park

Was a man, was a big man: A third generation Texan from Austrian stock, Richard stands an impressive 6 feet 4 inches of furry, pierced muscle. Originally from Amarillo, he has resided in Dallas for 28 years.

An animal loving Capricorn, Richard shares his life with a newly-adopted border collie, Romo, and a tortoise-shell cat named Maggie. A natural homebody, this engineering-minded man spends his time at home remodeling (he’s building an amazing addition on his house), and is equipped with electrical and plumbing skills. Richard’s hobbies include working out (really? We’d never have guessed), attending sports events (he’s a huge Cowboys, Stars and Rangers fan), and downloading all genres of music.

His favorite quote comes from his grandmother: “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.”

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition October 15, 2010.

—  Kevin Thomas