Student Sues Over Creationism!

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  • 2012-03-01T19:08:34

The teacher may have been sued, but when the case reached the 9th Circuit Court, it was dismissed. At first, I was unhappy with this judgment. But upon reflection, I believe I understand why the 9th Circuit dismissed it. The constitution clearly says that it cannot promote religion; it does not say that it cannot criticize religion. Promotion and criticism are two different things: Promotion pushes religion, while Criticism disparages religion. If a Christian is confident that his or her faith is true, then he or she should be able to withstand rude remarks and unprofessional scrutiny. Also, as a Christian educator myself, if I happen to criticize atheism, paganism, or any other religion in my class, I should be 100% safe to do so, as protected by the constitution. However, what I cannot do (in public school) is preach the Good News of Christianity, force my class to recite the Sinner's Prayer, or anything like that. I hope this clarification can help Christians to see that this lawsuit is not necessarily a win or loss for either party. However, it does provoke us to think carefully about what we are and are not allowed to do in the classroom setting. Perhaps, instead of suing a teacher for offending our beliefs, Christians should instead try talking to the teacher after class, maybe lend the teacher some scholarly literature on the subject of the belief, and/or form a group on campus that can come together to talk and encourage to each other, renew our security in our beliefs, and critically examine the misinformation being spouted by the teacher (and perhaps even spreading the group's ideas to other students after class). What we don't want to do is embarrass teachers or challenge their authority in front of their students. Give Caesar what is Caesar's. But remember, there are better ways to handle these kinds of federal situations than by bringing lawsuits on any teacher who makes offensive remarks as foolish as Dr. Corbett's.

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