At the end of every single football game at Cameron High School in Missouri, players gather at the 50-yard line and take a knee, bow their heads and pray.
But after an atheist group noticed that “school-sponsored prayers” were taking place at the end of every game — they flipped out, sending a letter to the school district demanding that the “illegal” prayer be stopped.
Now the Missouri district is launching an investigation into the so-called criminal action, blaming the coaches for supposedly coercing or forcing the students into participating in a religious act.
The group is known as the Freedom From Religion Foundation. Their attorney sent a letter to the school district with their demands.
“We ask that the district commence an investigation into the complaints alleged and take immediate action to stop any and all school-sponsored prayers or religious worship…” FFRF attorney Christopher Line wrote in the letter.
The superintendent of Cameron Schools was taken by surprise when he received the letter – as they had never received a single complaint about the prayer before, according to Fox.
In fact, head coach Jeff Wallace and assistant coach David Stucky have said that it’s not uncommon for opposing teams to take a knee and pray along with the Cameron players.
— TruChampions (@tru_champions) November 11, 2019
Nevertheless, he pledged that the investigation into the specifics of the gathering would be handled appropriately.
“As outlined in District policy, the Cameron R-I School District does not endorse religion,” Dr. Matt Robinson said in an interview with Fox News. “The District is currently investigating the concerns raised in the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s letter to the District, pursuant to the District’s non-discrimination policy and policy regarding religious expression, to determine whether District policy has been violated. The District takes concerns of violations of policy seriously, and will take action with regard to any findings from this investigation as appropriate.”
Experts argued that the school should just ignore it, claiming it had no legal basis in court.
“This letter is little more than a noisy, public complaint meant to harass and embarrass Americans just trying to live their lives,” said Jeremy Dys, special counsel for litigation and communications at First Liberty Institute. “Unless someone presents a plaintiff with actual legal standing, school officials should ignore these letters. No one should reward efforts to gin up controversy where none exists.”
Controversy brewing in Cameron, Missouri where the high school football coaches reportedly have been leading their players in prayer after games.
A church-state watchdog group wants it to stop.
— Zac Summers (@ZacOnTV) November 8, 2019
A local pastor also weighed in, hoping to put an end to the controversy, arguing that a little bit of good would go a long way and we shouldn’t do anything to stifle that.
“We have a lot of trouble with young people these days, and I think anything we can do positive, instead of negative, will influence and help our young people,” Reverend Tim Harrell told FOX 4. “I think people are going to support and stand by the values of this community.”
In their continued assault of the 1st Amendment and blatant misrepresentation of the separation of church and state, a national atheist and agnostic group has demanded that the Brevard County sheriff bail on his plan to put “In God We Trust” decals on his department’s new patrol vehicles.
Freedom From Religion Foundation Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor sent Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey a letter on Oct. 28 expressing the group’s displeasure with the message on the squad cars.
“In a time when citizens nationwide are increasingly distrustful of law enforcement officers’ actions, it is frightening and politically dubious for the local police department to announce to citizens that officers rely on the judgment of a deity, rather than on the judgment of the law,” Gaylor vomited on the paper.
She claims that the decals are a ‘misuse’ of taxpayer time and funds and said that the decals were a religious endorsement that was beyond the scope of secular government.
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Fortunately, Sheriff Ivey was not intimidated by Gaylor’s letter.
“They got a better chance of me waking up thin in the morning than they do of me not having that on our cars, and I think we both know that’s not going to happen,” he said. “It really represents everything that’s important to us here in our community.”
Sheriff Ivey went on to say that the group’s petulant whining did not deserve a response, and that he is focused on the important things.
Additionally, Ivey said the decals are not costing taxpayers a dime. That is thanks to the generosity of Boniface Heirs Automotive Group, who donated them to the department.
“We truly can’t thank A.J. and his team enough for all they continue to do for our community,” the sheriff said. “As was previously indicated, the design is only going on new vehicles, as they rotate into our fleet, and not on already existing vehicles.”
The new design for the cars also includes a sheriff’s star, a space shuttle and an American flag. The Sheriff’s department spoke with local veterans in the process of finalizing the layout.
“They greatly appreciated that we chose to honor the flag and principles of our great nation that our veterans fought to defend and wondered why it was not already emblazoned on every vehicle we have,” Ivy said.
The FFRF has turned its sights on municipalities that it believes it can intimidate. Since the Florida Legislature adopted “In God We Trust” as the state’s motto in 2006, it stands to reason that the state would allow municipalities to use the phrase as they see fit.
Furthermore, Sheriff Ivey referenced the fact that federal courts have repeatedly ruled that the use of the motto “in this context” is not unconstitutional.
“’In God We Trust’ has nothing whatsoever to do with the establishment of religion,” Ivy said. “Its use is of a patriotic or ceremonial character and bears no true resemblance to a governmental sponsorship of a religious exercise.”
Sheriff Ivey posted photos and background information about the fleet’s new patriotic design in a Facebook post.
“In the coming months and years, as our agency replaces our patrol fleet, our residents will see new patriotic graphics on our marked vehicles that show just how proud we are of our country and the principles our great nation was founded upon!!” the sheriff wrote.
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