The debate over religion and free speech in the classroom is in the spotlight again. This time, a teacher is suing a school district in New York after she was forced to remove all religious content from her classroom – including an inspirational quote from former President Ronald Reagan.
She was forced to remove sticky notes from her desk. And, she had to even take down a quote from President Reagan that included this message: “If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a Nation gone under.”
This is a prime example of a school district that overreacted. The school district is treating religion like its asbestos in ceiling tiles. Absurd. There’s no constitutional crisis here.
As I told Megyn Kelly on FOX News, the Supreme Court has been clear about protecting the First Amendment rights of students and teachers. You can watch the interview here.
In 1969, the Supreme Court, in the case of Tinker v. Des Moines Indep. Cmty. Sch. Dist., declared that neither students nor teachers “shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.”
As I have said many times, there’s a disturbing effort underway to purge any mention of religion from our culture – to remove the religious history of this great nation. It’s this hostility toward religion that is problematic and something our Founders never envisioned.
Jay Sekulow is Chief Counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), one of the most prestigious law firms in the country. He is an accomplished Supreme Court advocate, renowned expert on religious liberty, and a respected broadcaster. Jay Sekulow is an attorney with a passion for protecting religious liberty – freedom – democracy.
Used with the permission of the American Center for Law and Justice.