Kentucky Attorney General Upholds Reading of Bible in Public Schools

Kentucky Attorney General John Breckenridge was disclosed today to have expressed an official opinion that the King James Version of the Bible was not sectarian and that therefore it was not unconstitutional for it to be read in public schools.

He so informed Mrs. E.S. Wood of Elizabeth, Ky. who had sought his opinion on such reading in public schools. He said that Kentucky law required the reading of the Bible in public schools and that the law had been upheld by the Kentucky Court of Appeals. He added that the United States Supreme Court has never ruled on the question of whether such Bible reading violates the constitutional requirement of church-state separation.

He said a majority of state courts had upheld such reading, either alone or accompanied by a recitation of the Lord’s Prayer or the singing of hymns or both. The Attorney General said another basis for these rulings was that “any other constitutional objection is removed by excluding conscientiously objecting pupils from attendance.” He listed states in which courts have made such rulings as Kentucky, Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota. Pennsylvania and Texas.

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