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Tipsheet

Former Marine Loses Appeal for Her Right to Display a Bible Verse

Marine Lance Corporal Monifa Sterling foolishly thought she had the right to exercise her First Amendment and practice her faith. Yet, because she displayed one of her favorite Bible verses at her desk, she was punished. Her superiors demanded she remove the verse and even tore it up multiple times, only to have Sterling keep printing it out again. This retaliatory action became one of the reasons she was court-martialed. 

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She appealed, yet the court rejected her argument.

In its 4-1 opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces turned away Sterling’s case.

"We reject the argument that every interference with a religiously motivated act constitutes a substantial burden on the exercise of religion," the court said.

Sterling, along with the help of First Liberty Institute, plans to pursue a challenge at the Supreme Court.

'This is absolutely outrageous,' Kelly Shackelford, president of First Liberty Institute, which represented Sterling.

'A few judges decided they could strip a Marine of her constitutional rights just because they didn't think her beliefs were important enough to be protected.'

In case you were wondering, the offending verse reads, "No weapon formed against thee shall prosper."

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