Tennessee County Under Fire For Adding 'Judeo-Christian' Preamble To Official Document

Nov 5, 2022

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For more on this topic, see David's recent comentary: Good or Bad—A Tennessee County Promotes “Judeo-Christian Values”?

According to the Tennesseean:

"The Sumner County Commission in October voted 20-4 to pass a preamble to the county's Standing Rules and Procedures stating it should work to serve residents and exceed what Tennessee law requires. The rules and procedures are needed '"in order to perfect the operation of our county government, to ensure that it is just, orderly, efficient, cost-effective and most importantly reflective of the Judeo-Christian values inherent in our nation's founding,"' according to the preamble commissioners approved.

But adding the section about Judeo-Christian values immediately faced criticism and legal questions.

'“This would be a violation of the First Amendment and the establishment clause,” interim county attorney Ben Allen told commissioners during the lengthy meeting. “The Supreme Court could change their mind on what a violation of the establishment clause means tomorrow, but it’s very expensive to be the ones to find out if that’s the case.”'

Commissioners said passing the preamble was important and, in their view, recognized the values embedded in the nation's founding.

'"The only thing that this states here is ‘Judeo-Christian values inherent in our nation’s founding’ — it’s just referencing history,”' Commissioner Matthew Shoaf said. “We’re not placing the Ten Commandments up and stating that we’re going to abide by that code. We’re only acknowledging specific historic context.”

News Sources:

Tennessee county under fire for adding 'Judeo-Christian' preamble to official document

Good or Bad—A Tennessee County Promotes “Judeo-Christian Values”?
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