Judge Rules For Texas High School Cheerleaders In Bible Banner Suit


HOUSTON (May 8, 2013)—Cheerleaders at Kountze High School can display banners on which Bible verses are written at football games, State District Judge Steve Thomas ruled Wednesday.

Thomas ruled cheerleaders' banners are constitutionally permissible and determined that no law "prohibits cheerleaders from using religious-themed banners at school sporting events."

The ruling ends the case in Thomas' court.

A lawsuit over the banners had been scheduled for trial June 24.

In October, Thomas granted an injunction requested by the cheerleaders allowing them to continue displaying religious-themed banners pending the lawsuit's outcome.

At the time Thomas at said the school district's ban on the practice appeared to violate free speech rights.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, whose office backed the cheerleaders, called the ruling a “victory for religious liberties.”

“Students’ ability to express their religious views adds to the diversity of thought that has made this country so strong,” he said Wednesday.

“It took a lot of courage, but the Kountze High School cheerleaders chose to stand up for themselves and their rights, and in the end, they prevailed,” he said.

“I’m very proud of these young ladies; standing up for what you believe in isn’t always easy, but it’s always the right thing to do.”