Whoopi Goldberg Asks if Schools Are Now Going to Display Quran After ‘Foolishness’ of Louisiana’s 10 Commandments Law

By: Stephanie Bontorin | Published: Jun 21, 2024

On Wednesday, Louisiana Governor Jeff Landry signed a new law forcing public classrooms to display the Ten Commandments. Whoopi Goldberg stood up for the separation of church and state by calling out the decision on an episode of The View.

“If you want your child to have a religious education, send them to a religious school,” Goldberg said.

The Law Creates Major Constitutional Conflicts

During a discussion about the new law, Goldberg speculated that it would cause “major constitutional conflicts” in Louisiana for families who wish to follow a different religion or no religion at all. Since the 1960s, when the Supreme Court ruled that prayer in schools was unconstitutional, there has been a strict separation of religion in the classroom.

The Ten Commandments carved into two stone planks

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Legal expert Sunny Hostin weighed in on the issue. She stated that in 1980, a similar case in Kentucky was brought to the Supreme Court and immediately struck down.

Many Fear the Country Is Moving Backwards

Hostin brought up the issue that the Supreme Court seems to be undoing laws that have been in place for decades. “We’re talking about nearly identical laws, and half a century ago they said it wasn’t okay. What he’s banking on is this reactive, partisan Supreme Court will overturn precedent and say, now, that this is okay. We should be very afraid of that,” she added.

9 people wear black judges robes while sitting for a photo together

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During former President Donald Trump’s term, he appointed three judges to the Supreme Court, who all voted according to his personal political beliefs.

People of All Religions Attend Public School

In the U.S., the separation of religion in schools serves a clear purpose. Anyone attending a public institution should be allowed to worship their own religion and not be discriminated against by a dominant group.

Children in elementary school work during class.

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Goldberg issues some inflammatory language about including passages from alternate religions if the governor of Louisiana wishes to include Christian beliefs in schools. She claimed that “we are a nation of many religions” and questioned if the new law would mean that “we’re putting the Quran” or “the writings of Buddha” into schools as well.

Low Reading Scores in Louisiana Should Be the Focus

Alyssa Farah Griffin, another co-host on The View panel, brought up the low reading scores in Louisiana, which is something the governor should focus on.

A room full of young students sitting at group desks with a teacher standing at the front of the classroom

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The new law will be “inevitably challenged in the courts,” resulting in “millions of dollars fighting this that otherwise could be invested in the classroom to get kids up to speed,” Griffin added.

Goldberg Is No Stranger to Inflammatory Comments

This isn’t the first time that Goldberg has caused shockwaves with her divisive comments. In 2022, she was unceremoniously suspended from The View because of incorrect statements she made about the Holocaust.

A woman with short dreadlocks and a blue shirt

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However, this time, Goldberg has the support of many viewers who think that right-leaning lawmakers have gone too far.


Public School vs. Christian School Debate Heats Up

In recent years, Republicans have become less trustful of public schools, with less than half of all GOP voters distrusting the public school system. The debate draws a deeper line in the sand between the curriculum taught in public schools and Christian institutions.

Elementary school students sitting on the floor in a classroom, raising their hands eagerly to answer a question

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Many parents choose to opt out of the public school system to shield their children from touchy subjects like critical race theory, discussions of gender, and open attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community.


Parents Can Still Choose to Send Kids to Christian Schools

The system still allows private Christian schools to absorb small amounts of state funding. In areas where parents can send their taxes to Christian institutions instead, they often beat out and close down public institutions.

A group of kids sitting criss-cross apple sauce while holding their hands in prayer

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“Public schools public school,” she insisted. “That means everybody can go to public school. I don’t understand why — if you want your child to have a religious education, send them to a religious school! There’s nothing stopping you.”


Co-Hosts on the Show Take a Jab at Donald Trump

Co-host on the show Joy Behar joked that the Republican party should hang the Ten Commandments at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort alongside a “picture of Stormy Daniels right next to it.”

A women with red hair, gold necklace, and blue shirt sits in a chair interviewing an older woman wearing a red jacket

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In an effort to maintain a serious discussion on the show, Goldberg turned the conversation around to separate school-backed religious education from public schools to maintain a fair environment for all students.


Keeping Religion Out of Schools Maintains Respect for All Choices

The discussion on the panel concluded that keeping religion out of public schools allows every student to be respected in their own beliefs.

A group of kids sit for story time in a classroom

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“One of the things you don’t seem to understand is, I have the same respect for my child that I have for yours. I’m not asking you to believe what I believe, I’m not asking your kid to believe what I believe,” Goldberg remarked while making her final points for the show.


Public Taxes Provide Funding for Schools

While the public school system remains funded by property taxes in the area, many think that the law undervalues local residents’ opinions.

A small classroom with wooden desks and chairs, a chalkboard on the wall, a map and an American flag in the corner

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It’s been a long-standing issue that Republican lawmakers overstep their bounds and apply their personal beliefs and religion to public rulings that affect constituents of varying beliefs, religions, and moral codes.


The Law Forces Public Schools To Display the Commandments

The new ruling doesn’t just allow classrooms to display the commandments. Instead, it forces them to display the rules regardless of how teachers or parents feel about the subject.

A person teaching a room full of adult learners. There is a projection screen and they are standing at a podium.

Kenny Eliason/Unsplash

The measure is the first of its kind in the U.S., while it’s not likely to stand for long, it will go through many rounds of fights in court. Until then, the commandments must be displayed in all classrooms up to and including the university level.