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Whose First Amendment rights were violated?

Discussion in 'Education Policies' started by PLC1, May 5, 2009.

  1. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Judge: teacher violated student's rights by calling creationism 'superstitious nonsense'

    Saying that creationism is "superstitious nonsense" violates the establishment of religion clause ofthe First Amendment, but sanctioning a teacher for having said so doesn't violate his rights to free speech under the same amendment.

    Does that sound right to you? It sounds strange to me.

    One has to wonder just how the issue of creationism came up at all during a class in European history.
     
  2. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    Yea, does sound strange. That said, I think teachers need to be open and fostering of all points of view, and not demean other viewpoints, especially if it then will somehow effect the kid's grade.

    Religion has played a huge role in European history, I would be shocked to hear you can teach a class on the subject and not bring up religion.
     
  3. samsara15

    samsara15 Member

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    Then you best be careful what you say about Muslims and their religion, BigRob.
     
  4. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    Why? I am not a teacher.
     
  5. Pandora

    Pandora Well-Known Member

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    Had the teacher said something like


    Jesus is the way the truth and the life and no man comes to the Father except by Him.

    or

    God created the world in 6 days and on the seventh day he rested, would you still feel the same way about the punishment the teacher was given?
     
    jbbarn likes this.
  6. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Interesting question. Would making such a statement in a public school classroom violate anyone's first amendment rights? If saying that creationism is superstitious nonsense did so, then I suppose making a statement like your example could do so as well, unless, of course, the entire class were made up of young Earth believing Christians.

    Such a statement would fall into the same category as the one that was actually made, IMO: Not contrary to the First Amendment, but certainly inappropriate in a school setting.
     
  7. Pandora

    Pandora Well-Known Member

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    I think the problem here was he violated the establishment clause and he happened to do it with his words.

    He has a right to say what he did, and if he were a "flat earther" he would have a right to say the bible is the only way except in a government job where you in a way represent the governemnt. When in that role you can not prop up or tear down any religon.

    Freedom of speech is a tricky thing, I have freedom to sit in my house and yell FIRE FIRE FIRE but I cant go into the court house or a movie house and do it.

    I think the case should never have gone this far. So the man has his view, his students who do not agree should have challenged him instead of making a federal case out of it.
     
  8. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Exactly. One way in which students learn is by hearing opinions with which they disagree, and challenging them. The statement may have been inadvisable, but it should never have become a "federal case", literally or figuratively.
     
  9. Pandora

    Pandora Well-Known Member

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    WHOOOT we agree


    Its nice when we can agree :)
     
  10. Mr.Dysfunctional

    Mr.Dysfunctional New Member

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    I would like to think that teachers should be the mediators of fact and not given lessons in possiblity (( unless playing devil's advocate within the lines of " if such and such happened instead )) History teachers even more so. That being said, why not bring the subject to bare playing pro and con to both side a subject and allow smartly the student to decide for themselves.

    Case and point ... my English history teacher in college had the class writing a report on the Discovery of the New world and the things most changed by it. I myself thought religion and the most changed paradigm shift however others thought otherwise... while I have that view possiblie away from others... the point of the teacher so simply for me to interpret the data and walk away with a new found understanding.
     
  11. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, it is.

    But, we learn more when challenging an opinion with which we disagree.:D
     
  12. Pandora

    Pandora Well-Known Member

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    We can disagree tomorrow :) its nice even if its just once in a while
     
  13. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    From what I read... I dont really think anyones right was violated to a enough extent to bring this much hype about it. It does sound like the plaintiffs are not interested in making a living off it, which is noble.

    I am also glad that potentially an otherwise quality educator, perhaps gifted teacher isnt being overly smeared over it. I am not sure if this was brought through the normal chain of command of going to the principal first then school board etc.

    I think this teacher probably needs to cool down on the rhetoric and probably needs to provide more news and less commentary, some history teachers/professors can be this way as most of us know.

    Still doesnt have anything on the "Bong Hits For Jesus" sign from 2002.
     
  14. Dante the Marxist

    Dante the Marxist New Member

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    Why do we bother with the constitution? It is the second most contradictory document I have ever read. Our own government violates it every day, and most countries change thier consitution every few years.
     
  15. AbeLincoln

    AbeLincoln Member

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    I'd tell my student, "You know, John? When the Almighty God created you, He never thought you were 'superstitious nonsense' while He carefully and wonderfully formed and made you. He created you for a good purpose; and loves you just as much as everyone else in this class."

    Every student has the right to the truth.
     
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