April 6, 2007

I finally realized what that 10 Commandments monument reminds me of.

I did a post the other day about the Ten Commandments monument, with photos showing how it's positioned on the grounds of the Texas state capitol.

Ten Commandments monument

I said I didn't think putting it by the side of the road like that was very respectful. (Of course, the disrespect helps make it constitutional!) But yesterday it dawned on me exactly what it reminded me of: a speaker machine at a drive-up fast food restaurant.

I'll have the adultery.

Would you like a graven image with that?

16 comments:

SteveR said...

If thou can read this sign you are driving too slow.

MadisonMan said...

Only if you're driving on the wrong side of the road. Which somehow makes it an even more apt observation.

yetanotherjohn said...

Just a friendly hint about not messing with Texas. It's one thing to snicker about such a thought. But the DPS might be a tad severe on you if you decide to pose a picture of you and your car up on the sidewalk.

p.s. For more perspective on the ruling, it would be nice for you to take a picture of the south mall where most of the described monuments have been placed.

Simon said...

The photos have tended to reinforce the idea that for political reasons, Justice Breyer wanted to come out one way in one case and the other in the other, and that he made that decision before figuring out (1) how and (2) which case he'd vote for and which against. In view of these photographs, I find it quite difficult to take Justice Breyer's position in those cases seriously. Still, better to have him along for one than none, I suppose.

David said...

The placement of those tablets serves the purpose of being a looming presence that infects most of the drivers and pedestrians, in one way or another, who pass through it's mystic aura.

MadisonMan said...

I'll have the adultery.

By the way, I read that as I'll have the idolatry several times before seeing the words you wrote.

Bissage said...

It's true. Before he made it big in Hollywood, Charlton Heston worked the drive-through at a Wendy's.

Weird!

Ann Althouse said...

There are lots of pictures of the better monuments in my Austin photoset. But of course, I'm paying special attention to this one. It was the basis of a Supreme Court case that I teach every year!

By the way, you're not allowed to drive your car up along that road at all. There are police cars blocking the roads into the grounds.

Simon said...

^ And now you have some additional material to include in the discussion. ;)

hdhouse said...

Hold the mayo.

Too Many Jims said...

Simon said...
The photos have tended to reinforce the idea that for political reasons, Justice Breyer wanted to come out one way in one case and the other in the other, and that he made that decision before figuring out (1) how and (2) which case he'd vote for and which against. In view of these photographs, I find it quite difficult to take Justice Breyer's position in those cases seriously.


I can understand you finding it difficult to take Justice Breyer's position seriously given your proclivity for Scalia's point of view. I can't, however, see how seeing pictures of the monument's setting makes it difficult to take his position seriously. The pictures, to me, have confirmed some of the points in his Van Orden opinion. For example, in the opinion he writes: " [t]he physical setting of the monument, moreover, suggests little or nothing of the sacred." As Prof. Althouse notes: "putting it by the side of the road like that was not very respectful. (Of course, the disrespect helps make it constitutional!)"

peter hoh said...

I wonder what the anti-Althousiana take on this post will be.

hdhouse said...

I'm curious to know, and I asked this before, did Breyer see pictures of the monument as per Ann's photos or was he relying on a physical description....and what of that...I have no knowledge of this...are photographs part of the submission?

Too Many Jims said...

hdhouse,

Yes Breyer did have access to pictures of the location of the monument and he references them in his concurring opinion. If you follow this link(.pdf) and go to page 31, you will see a picture of the area and page 32 provides a map of the grounds.

The picture is from a different angle than Prof. Althouse's. You will see in the picture that there is an arrow that points to where the monument is located. I think the location is the same as in Prof. Althouse's photo but I don't think that the monument is the same. I don't know what explains the discrepancy but admit that it could be that I need to get my eyes checked.

Ann Althouse said...

It's the same monument! I have three pictures (go to the earlier post). I'm trying to show the setting and how different it is from what you'd picture reading description in the written opinion.

Too Many Jims said...

I went back and looked at the appendix in the opinion and now I see it. My problem was that the picture shows the "profile" of the monument which has the effect, on me at least, of making the monument look even smaller. I have no way of knowing who got that picture in the record (rather than a picture like the picture you posted here), but if it was the proponents of the monument it may have been a bit of subtle yet effective advocacy.

I have appreciated your pictures because they do "show the setting and how different it is from what you'd picture reading description in the written opinion." On the other hand, they generally have reinforced the idea that there is nothing of the sacred. And ultimately that (and the time period they have been there) were what apparently carried the day with Justice Breyer.