Tag Archives: discrimination

TMLC Appeals Ninth Circuit’s Anti-God Decision to the U.S Supreme Court

ANN ARBOR, MI – The Thomas More Law Center announced today that it has appealed a controversial decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court. The appeal was filed in the case of Bradley Johnson v. Poway Unified School District late last week.

For the past twenty-five years, Bradley Johnson, a high school math teacher at the Poway School District located in California had been displaying red, white and blue banners in his classroom that contained patriotic phrases such as: “In God We Trust, ” “One Nation Under God, ” and “God Bless America.”

He displayed the banners pursuant to a 30-year school district policy that permitted teachers to maintain classroom displays of non-curricular messages that reflected their personal opinions and values. In effect, the school district designated classroom walls as forum for the expression of the teacher’s private opinions and viewpoints.

However, in 2007 school officials ordered Johnson to remove his banners because they promoted a “Judeo-Christian” viewpoint.

In an outrageous case of double standard, school officials allowed other teachers to display non-Christian religious displays in their classrooms. These displays included a 40-foot string of Tibetan prayer flags with images of Buddha hung across a classroom, a poster with Hindu leader Mahatma Gandhi’s “7 Social Sins;” a poster of Muslim leader Malcolm X; a poster of the Buddhist leader Dali Lama; and a poster containing the lyrics of John Lennon’s anti-religion song “Imagine, ” which begins, Imagine there’s no Heaven.

As a result, the Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which defends the religious liberty of Christians, filed a federal lawsuit against the school district on behalf of Johnson.

On September 4, 2008, Federal District Judge Robert T. Benitez agreed with the Thomas More Law Center. He ruled that “Johnson was simply exercising his free speech rights on subjects that were otherwise permitted in the limited public forum created by Defendants” and that there was an “ongoing violation of his First Amendment free speech rights.”

However, the Poway School District appealed the ruling and a three judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed Judge Benitez’s decision ruling that the school district was justified in removing banners that mentioned God, while leaving untouched the Tibetan Prayer flags and the images of Buddha.

Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Law Center, commented, “This case is a prime example of how public schools across our nation are cleansing our classrooms of our Christian heritage while promoting atheism and other non–Christian religions under the guise of cultural diversity.”

Continued Thompson, “The Ninth Circuit Court’s rationale in allowing the Tibetan Prayer Flags and references to other religions while outlawing America’s patriotic slogans that mention God is unconvincing. Brad Johnson was simply exercising his free speech rights in a forum created by the school district to inform students of the religious foundations of our nation.”

Attempts to get a rehearing in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals failed, and so the Law Center pursued its only remaining option– a Petition for a Writ of Certiorari (appeal) to the United States Supreme Court.

Housing District Employee Suspended For Displaying Cross

Colin Atkinson, the Wakefield District Housing (WDH) employee who was in the news recently for fighting for the right to keep displaying a palm cross in his van, has been suspended from work following continued harassment.

Mr Atkinson had displayed a small palm cross in his work van for fifteen years when his employers told him to remove it after an anonymous complaint suggested it may offend those of other faiths.

After a campaign mounted by Christian Concern and negotiations with his employer it was agreed in April that Mr Atkinson could continue to display his cross in his van.

Originally published by Christian Concern on August 1, 2011.

However, after a resolution had seemingly been found, Mr Atkinson suffered repeated problems at work. He was moved to a different workplace location 16 miles away, has had his work van removed from him and been told to travel by bus instead due to “general financial cutbacks.”

Mr Atkinson filed a grievance procedure and has now been told to stay at home. Speaking to the Daily Mail, he said:

“I thought common sense had triumphed when the company agreed I could go back to work. But I have found there is still a lot of hostility against me, even though I have done nothing more than defend the basic rights of Christians to express their faith in public.

“My employers have broken their promises and I believe they are trying to humiliate me or dismiss me for seeking to stand up for my rights. It is disgusting what they are doing.”

One of the bosses at WDH who had asked Mr Atkinson to remove the cross from his van disappeared from the office about a month after Mr Atkinson returned to work. His absence was due to Mr Atkinson’s presence in the office, according to the company.

Mr Atkinson added:

“Meanwhile, the boss resumed work three weeks ago but I feel he should be the one who should be moved, not me. My bosses have now offered me a pay-off to retire early but a condition is that I, my wife Geraldine and all my family would be prevented from speaking out publicly.

“That is not my style. It would be breaching my human rights.”

Andrea Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre, said:

“After a public outcry, Colin was allowed to return to work and to continue to display a palm cross in his van.

“However, since the media attention died away, he has suffered continued harassment and victimisation, and Wakefield and District Housing has not honoured its agreement to allow him to return to work. It seems that WDH hoped that Colin could be bought off and go quietly. But he will not be gagged or bullied.”

Cincinnati Public Schools Blocked from Discriminating Against Charter and Private Schools

The 1851 Center halted Cincinnati Public Schools’ (CPS) efforts to suppress competing charter and private schools with an important victory in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court.

In CPS v. Conners, Judge Robert P. Ruehlman ruled CPS’ policy of prohibiting already sold and unused public school buildings from being used as private or charter schools violated state law. The 1851 Center litigated the case on behalf of the Theodore Roosevelt School, a Cincinnati charter school, and its owner Dr. Roger Conners, who was sued by Cincinnati Public Schools on the eve of the school’s August opening.

Dr. Conners purchased an unused school building located in Cincinnati’s Fairmount neighborhood, where all CPS schools are in academic emergency, and 80 percent of families are of minority status and live in poverty.

CPS sued to enforce a deed restriction prohibiting the use of previously-taxpayer-owned school buildings for use by a charter or private school. The 1851 Center asserted such a restriction is void by Ohio’s public policy in favor of school choice, and cheats taxpayers of sales revenue from the buildings. The court agreed.

In his ruling, Judge Ruehlman called CPS’ deed restrictions “anti-competitive.” The judge asserted CPS was merely attempting to suppress competition from charter and other alternative schools, and thwart school choice for the parents and children of Cincinnati.

On July 6, Judge Ruehlman denied Cincinnati Public Schools’ desperate last-ditch effort to derail Theodore Roosevelt School’s opening, denying CPS’ Motion to Stay. This clears the way for the school to open in August. Area families have already enrolled over 200 children. The school will employ approximately 40 people.

A Public Records Request by the 1851 Center revealed that CPS has already paid its hand-picked law firm over $32,000 in Cincinnati taxpayers’ money for the case, at an average rate of approximately $200 per hour, and at times as much as $256 per hour.

This is quite a sum, considering that Dr. Conners only paid $30,000 for the school building. Moreover, the 1851 Center offered CPS an opportunity to settle before it initiated the litigation against Dr. Conners it eventually lost. The amount spent by CPS does not include the fees to be paid for the pending appeal.

Source: 1851 Center for Constitutional Law, July 22, 2010

Eugenics in 2010: Obamacare Cost-Cutting Genetic Discrimination

In the March 31st edition of LifeNews, Kristan Hawkins, executive director of Students for Life, wrote how Obamacare further the eugenics the Left introduced in the United States through abortion.

Hawkins interest in the current health care reform stems from her infant son’s battle with Cystic fibrosis, an expensive-to-treat and fatal genetic disease. Obamacare threatens to ration top notch healthcare for children like her son.

The question is does she have any support for her concern?

The following quote is from her LifeNews article:

A week before the doomed healthcare vote, Representative Bart Stupak (D-MI) admitted to the National Review Online that Congressional Democrats argued that passing his pro-life amendment which prohibits taxpayer funding of abortion will result in more children and therefore higher healthcare costs. They’re saying: “If you pass the Stupak amendment, more children will be born, and therefore it will cost us millions more.”

This argument isn’t new but in fact is the same old 1970’s argument that John Holdren (the President’s Science Czar) used when saying that the more people there are, the less food there will be. This 1970’s argument has been regurgitated in 2010 with a healthcare slant: the more people, the less healthcare available for you and me.

Democrats in Congress know that incentivizing abortions by making them cheaper and more accessible will lead to higher abortion rates costing less healthcare dollars and making those limited funds available for some other person.

When the state is involved in the cost of healthcare, it knows that it is dealing with scare resources and that rationing will have to occur. This fact has already been reiterated multiple times by President Obama’s Comparative Effectiveness Research Council appointee and brother to his Chief-of-Staff, Dr. Zeke Emanuel.

Emanuel admitted in The Lancet medical journal last January that cost-cutting measures in healthcare reform are merely “lipstick” and rationing will have to occur in any government healthcare system.

He even went so far as to describe his ideal rationing plan where those at the beginning and end of life would receive 2nd tier healthcare when scarcity develops. In the article, he further talks about his sense of “communitarianism” and how those who are unproductive members of society are a burden and healthcare dollars could be best spent elsewhere. Bottom line Message: We only want the “genetically” superior people and less is better.

To Dr. Emanuel, my son Gunner is an excess burden on society.

Yet, he has been appointed by President Obama to serve on the President’s Comparative Effectiveness Research Council, the body that will make “recommendations” to doctors as to how to treat their patients in the most cost-effective way.

Today, new advances being made with prenatal genetic testing aren’t for the benefit of the family, but for the destruction of the pre-born child within the mother. The ability to diagnose diseases such as Cystic Fibrosis, Down Syndrome, and others while the child is still in the womb means a greater chance a woman will be encouraged and pressured to abort, thus limiting that child’s “burden” on society.

It is shocking what you find if you Google search the phrase “cost benefit analysis of prenatal testing” and read the medical journal articles (especially those coming out of Europe on this issue).

Now that Obamacare has passed, will prenatal genetic tests eventually move from being voluntary to mandatory, in the name of cost-savings? Down the road, will abortions be encouraged by the state or even forced on those children who will have special needs or will need life-long medical care?

Further, what will happen to children to who are born with costly diseases? Will they receive the best medical care or just enough to “make them comfortable?” Today, in America, this rationing is already happening to many babies born with Trisomy 18 and 13, as parents have gone on the record proving medical doctors told them they had to think about “resources” when making the decision as to how to treat their children. Thankfully, the cases today aren’t uniform but the misjudgment of one or two doctors. What will happen if people like Dr. Emanuel are writing the guidelines of care for all doctors?

Let me offer some additional observations.

Obamacare as depicted above is a cost-benefit application of Darwin’s survival of the fittest, but one imposed by the socialist state. This is not much different than Hilter’s Darwinian-based eugenic program to create a superior Aryan race. The difference is not in principle but rather one of goal. Unlike Hitler, the goal of the socialist Left may not be creating the perfect race. Their goal may be more practical: Forcing on America one world socialism–their version of perfect economics and governance.

Now, that the courts and Left have declared abortion is a Constitutional right with many true believers, the Left funded by those like billionaire Soros and led by Pelosi, Reed, and Obama are seeking to further the original agenda of creating the Great Society by bankrupting the nation while promising to decrease the budget at the great expense of more innocent lives. (Remember, the reason for the Great Recession was over-indebtedness.)

The loud proponents of anti-discrimination it turns out are the most hideous of discriminators. They obstruct the right to life because they are fully prejudiced against any who they deem unworthy of it. Just as the CIA has been used to destroy uncooperative regimes, the Left uses courts and deceit to convince the masses that killing the unwanted is a right to the good life. Irresponsibility, immorality and killing is part of the Left’s definition of freedom. Freedom has thus been perverted for the benefit of killing those who may cost the socialist state too much money.

Yet, no one seems to question whether the genetic diseases of those like Hawkin’s son, Gunner, who will be discriminated against are preventable. That is, are they merely the result of genetic accidents or are they induced by a polluted environment, contaminated food, stress resulting from an unjust political economy, or other factors?
If the later, one solution maybe be in public policy that is based on a holistic view of the common good for all citizens rather than imposing ideological party or special interest agendas though piecemeal problem solving policies.

Subway essay contest for homeschoolers too

Dayton Daily News staff writer Kelli Wynn’s reported on Subway’s exclusion of home-schoolers from its current essay contest.

The contest had four purposes:

1. Get more people to buy more Subway goodies.
2. Encourage to kids to be more physically active.
3. To support local school physical education with donations.
3. Give kids an opportunity to use their communication skills for fun.

Parents like Jen Hunter of Kettering are not happy with Subway.

“Hunter said her 11-year-old son, Jonah, loves Subway and would have liked to have entered the contest called Every Sandwich Tells a Story,” wrote Wynn. Hunter called Subway and complained about the exclusionary rules.

Obviously, Subway took Hunter seriously because there is now an official Every Sandwich Tells A Story contest coming that will include home-schoolers too. Here is what Subway’s contest page for home-schoolers says:

We at SUBWAY® restaurants place a high value on education, regardless of the setting, and have initiated a number of programs and promotions aimed at educating our youth in the areas of health and fitness.

We sincerely apologize to anyone who feels excluded by our current essay contest. Our intention was to award the grand prize of $5000 in athletic equipment to a traditional school with the unfortunate knowledge that many schools are removing physical education from their curriculum. Knowing this, we would be able to impact as many children as possible with this prize.

To address the inadvertent limitation of our current contest and provide an opportunity for even more kids to have the benefit from prizing that encourages physical activity, we are creating an additional contest in which home schooled students will be encouraged to participate. When the kids win, everyone wins!