August 22, 2003
Court Orders Woman In Wheelchair Removed From Ten Commandments Monument
Among Other things, Much Easier To Move
The Alabama Supreme Court today reversed its earlier decision to remove a 5,280 pound monument depicting the Ten Commandments from the State Supreme Court lobby and instead ordered the removal of a 220 pound woman in a wheelchair who had parked herself next to the monument and was planning to "live there."
"For one thing, she's much easier to move," said one Alabama Justice. "She weighs less and she's on wheels."
The justices had earlier ordered the removal of the monument because it violated the constitutionally mandated separation of church and state.
"But then we realized, the problem isn't the monument, it's the wackos around the monument," said Republican Justice Patrick O'Hurlihy.
Removal of the monument had already been made difficult by Alabama Chief Justice Moore -- who secretly installed the monument in a midnight ceremony that some say involved the sacrifice of several trial lawyers -- in making the monument so heavy that it is virtually impossible to move without causing tens of thousands of dollars worth of damage to the courthouse steps.
The court has instead decided to drape the commandments in black velvet and use it as a platform for an expresso bar, which the court sorely needs. "Thou shalt not fall asleep during oral arguments," said Justice Herlihy.
"If only the the separation of church and state meant that we could separate these people from the entire State . . .," said an Alabama judge, Anthony Torantelli, who wished to remain nameless.
"Religious fanaticism," he added, "It's not just for Moslems anymore."
If anyone can find the picture I saw yesterday of a woman in a wheelchair next to the monument, please send me the link or the image. (Of course I can't find it now.)
Scratch that, and thanks again to Nick Barlow!
Posted by Tom Burka at 12:22 PM