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Plaintiffs in Ten Commandments Case Allowed Anonymity

The names of students and their parents who filed a lawsuit against a school in New Kensington, Pennsylvania over a Ten Commandments monument at the high school there will be allowed to retain their anonymity after a federal judge granted their motion to do so.

A federal judge will allow anonymity for three of the four people who are suing New Kensington-Arnold School District over its Ten Commandments monument.

Attorney Marcus B. Schneider, who represents the Freedom From Religion Foundation and two families who filed suit in September, recently asked U.S. District Judge Terrence F. McVerry to allow the two children and one of the parents to continue to use the pseudonym “Doe” as the lawsuit proceeds…

“Due to the highly personal and sensitive religious matters involved, the age of the student-Plaintiffs, the (ill will) expressed by the public regarding the Plaintiffs and this case, harassing remarks about the Plaintiffs, and the potential for physical harm, Plaintiffs request an order permitting Doe 1, Doe 2, and Doe 3 to proceed under pseudonyms,” Schneider wrote on Nov. 21.

The article indicates that the school did not oppose the motion for anonymity, but their attorneys are apparently objecting to the fact that the judge’s order cited some of the hostile and threatening comments made on Facebook and elsewhere. Some of those comments:

• “Tell these (expletive) to go to hell and stay in Wisconsin and mind their own … business … .”
• “Maybe we should get that lady‘s phone number who is (a) participant in the lawsuit and have everybody call her and give he(r) our opinion.”
• “I‘m sure if we look up the (expletive) she probably has a facebook account or a facebook page for her ridiculous group and we can slam the (expletive) out of the (expletive).”
• “Have the families involved in the lawsuit been identified? I cannot believe anyone living in the community would participate in such a worthless cause. Someone needs to send that group back to Wisconsin with several black eyes.”
• “They are lucky it‘s not the 50‘s or 60‘s (or) they would be in deep (expletive).”
• “These people need drug onto the street and shot.”

But the school’s attorneys miss the point completely:

The district‘s attorneys wrote the Internet comments included in the court filings are “immaterial and inflammatory allegations pertaining to the alleged actions of third parties who are not officials or final policy makers of the District and are not before this Court.”…

“As this matter has garnered significant publicity, the inclusion of the immaterial and inflammatory allegations as well as the related attachments creates spurious issues that could potentially pollute a future trial,” Sanchez and Thompson wrote.

But they are directly relevant to the motion being considered. Do they expect the judge to suppress the evidence that supports his ruling on the motion? Just bizarre.

Comments

  1. Nemo says

    It’s prejudicial to their clients, because it shows that they’re on the same side as a bunch of stupid, violent bigots.

  2. says

    The school’s attorneys didn’t just “miss the point;” they’re a seriously messed-up bunch of thin-skinned crybabies freaking out when the insanity and stupidity of their side is exposed for all to see.

  3. baal says

    Nemo’s right. The legal defense to the 10 commandments monument is that it’s ceremonial deism or not a religious artifact. If the record includes evidence of xians getting violent, then it doesn’t look ceremonial or just a part of the scenery. Their violence and emotional involvement undermine the school’s defense. Of course the school’s attorneys know this and that’s why they want to quash it.

  4. Reginald Selkirk says

    baal #4: If the record includes evidence of xians getting violent, then it doesn’t look ceremonial…

    For God’s sake, think about what you’re writing. Christians are a group of people who celebrate death by torture, and one of their primary ceremonies is ritual cannibalism. Violence and ceremony are certainly not mutually exclusive to them.

  5. Andrew G. says

    “Tell these (expletive) to go to hell and stay in Wisconsin and mind their own … business … .”

    Bethany: Were they sent to hell?

    Metatron: Worse. Wisconsin. For the entire span of human history.

    (“Dogma”)

  6. Reginald Selkirk says

    What’s with the Wisconsin references anyway? Has the identity of the plaintiffs leaked, or are the idiots merely confused because the FFRF is headquartered in Wisconsin?

  7. kylawyer says

    How does that song go? “And you will know they are Christians by their love.” Should be we will know Christians by their hate.

  8. dingojack says

    ““Tell these (expletive) to go to hell and stay in Wisconsin and mind their own … business … .”

    Who knew Wisconsin is, in reality, hell?

    ;) Dingo
    ———-
    ‘If I owned Wisconsin & Texas, I’d rent out Texas and live in Wisconsin’. –
    doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.

  9. John Horstman says

    @6: Sadly, the airport scene was NOT filmed at Gen. Mitchell International Airport here in Milwaukee, which, being a Milwaukee resident who has cause to visit our airport with some frequency, I always find immersion-breaking. Also, in answer to Metatron’s later question, Wisconsin isn’t really *that* bad, though our Republican state government is trying hard to live down to that description.

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