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Newdow Refiles Suit in Pledge Case
2005.01.05 (Wed) 23:55
When Michael Newdow's lawsuit aimed at ridding the Pledge of Allegiance of the phrase "Under God" was dismissed by the Supreme Court in June due to his lack of standing to bring the suit, he promised that he would be back. In making its decision, the Supreme Court cited the fact that Newdow didn't have primary custody of his daughter, who was being compelled to recite the pledge in school. We were happy to see Newdow fulfill his promise to refile in this article:
An atheist who sued because he did not want his young daughter exposed to the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance has filed another lawsuit — this time with other parents.
Michael Newdow won his case more than two years ago before a federal appeals court, which said it was an unconstitutional blending of church and state for public school students to pledge to God.
In June, however, the Supreme Court dismissed the case, saying Newdow could not lawfully sue because he did not have custody of his elementary school-aged daughter and because the girl's mother objected to the lawsuit.
In the latest challenge filed Monday in Sacramento federal court, eight co-plaintiffs have joined the suit, and all are custodial parents or the children themselves, Newdow said.
"I want this decided on its merits," said Newdow, a doctor and a lawyer, who again is the attorney in the latest pledge case.
While it's our opinion that any American citizen automatically has standing to file a suit in response to an unconstitutional act that they are aware of, simply by virtue of being a citizen, that isn't how the law is currently implemented. In instances where the government displays and endorses religious symbols on government property — such as a large stone monument displaying the Ten Commandments at the courthouse — any citizen passing by who is "offended" is allowed to file suit. The same should be true for all such cases.
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[ Filed under: % Civil Liberties % Government & Politics % Religion ]
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