In the ongoing controversy over a monument dedicated to the Ten Commandments, currently standing next to the state Capitol in Oklahoma, a judge has now given the state 30 days to remove the edifice from the Capitol grounds.
District Judge Thomas Prince handed down his order on Friday, giving the state until October 12 to remove the Ten Commandments monument that has been at the center of a constant tug of war between the state and atheist groups.
Judge Prince’s ruling comes on the heels of a ruling by the state Supreme Court that held that the monument violates a state constitutional ban on using public property for the benefit of religion.
The state Supreme Court affirmed its ruling in a 7-2 decision at the end of July after a series of appeals were filed against the removal of the Ten Commandments.
Ultimately, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt had filed a request for a rehearing of the court’s decision but was denied.
“We carefully considered the arguments of the commission and found no merit warranting a grant of rehearing,” Chief Justice John Reif said at the time.
The monument was erected by an order of the state legislature in 2009 and was finally put in place in 2012.
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