Faith

End Bible classes? West Virginia school seeks to dismiss atheist lawsuit

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A West Virginia school district being sued for offering an elective Bible class has filed a motion to dismiss the suit brought by an atheist group.

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Mercer County Schools is being sued by the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation for offering a course called "Bible in the Schools" since 1939.

The First Liberty Institute, a Texas-based legal firm, filed the motion to dismiss earlier this week on behalf of the school district.

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In their motion, First Liberty argued that the FFRF lawsuit should be dismissed in part because the plaintiffs lack the standing to sue Mercer County Schools.

"The purported harms Plaintiffs allege are merely speculative, resulting from choices the [Plaintiffs] say they may have to make well into the future and related fear of potential ostracism that is grounded only in speculation, not in fact," read the motion.

In January, the FFRF filed a lawsuit against Mercer County Schools for offering an elective Bible course that has existed in some capacity since 1939.

FFRF filed the suit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia, Bluefield Division on behalf of an unnamed parent who is raising her child as an atheist.

"This program advances and endorses one religion, improperly entangles public schools in religious affairs, and violates the personal consciences of nonreligious and non-Christian parents and students," read the lawsuit.

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