Lenoir City High School Tries To Keep Atheist Quiet!Posted by Phil Ferguson on February 24th, 2012 – 4 Comments – Posted in Church and State
LENOIR CITY — Krystal Myers is an honors student, captain of the swim team and editor of her high school newspaper.
She’s also an atheist in a predominantly Christian student body.
In a recent editorial that Myers, 18, intended for the Lenoir City High School newspaper entitled “No Rights: The Life of an Atheist,” she questioned her treatment by the majority.
“Why does atheism have such a bad reputation? Why do we not have the same rights as Christians?” she wrote.
Myers’ editorial also accused school administrators, teachers and coaches of violating the constitution by promoting “pro-Christian” beliefs during school-sponsored events.
Lenoir City school authorities have denied Myers permission to publish her editorial in the Panther Press, the staff supervised student newspaper.
They also say their policies do not violate the constitutional rights of any students.
Schools Director Wayne Miller said it was the decision of the school authorities not to allow publication of Myers’ editorial because of the potential for disruption in the school.
We don’t want different views. That would disrupt jesus!
“We do have the right to control the content of the school paper if we feel it is in the best interest of the students,” he said.
Getting free of religion would be in the best interest of the students.
As to the constitutional violations alleged by Myers, Miller said he is comfortable the school system is on the right side of the law. Prayers at athletic events are student-led.
School board meetings do begin with a prayer, but there are usually no students present, he said.
According to a 1999 6th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling, Cleveland School Board vs. Coles, school boards are not allowed to conduct prayer services during board meetings, Haynes said.
Myers gives other examples in Lenoir City of what she believes are constitutional violations, including T-shirts worn by a teacher that depict the crucifix and a “Quote of the day” that teachers write on the boards in the classroom.
The quotes often include Bible verses, she said.
Not cool! Is this a third world country?
Myers also cited Lee vs. Wiseman, a U.S. Supreme Court decision based on a case where a parent tried to stop a rabbi from speaking at a middle school graduation. The court ruled in a 5-4 decision that the inclusion of clergy who offer prayers at official public school ceremonies violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
How clear does this need to be. Want jesus – go to church. Want an education – go to school.
Prayers at graduations that are listed on the program are not spontaneous events protected by free speech, Myers argues. Prayer before athletic events is also unconstitutional because it is encouraged by teachers and coaches, she said.
“As the captain of the swim team, I feel I have to be a part of it,” she said.
She should not have to. The school is for everyone.