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Court: E. Brunswick football coach can't kneel, bow head as team prays
star ledger ^ | 04.15.08 | Chandra M. Hayslett/

Posted on 04/15/2008 9:12:32 PM PDT by Coleus

The East Brunswick school board was within its rights to tell a football coach he cannot kneel and bow his head as members of his team have a student-led pre-game prayer, a federal appeals court ruled today.  The ruling from the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia reversed a lower-court ruling made almost two years ago.  All three members of the three-judge panel wrote their own opinions on the issue, which pits the right to free speech against the freedom from official establishment of a religion.

The judges agreed the East Brunswick Board of Education's policy barring school staff from joining in student-led was constitutional. But the judges differed on what exactly a coach should do when his team prays.  From the time Marcus Borden became the Bears' coach in 1983, he was deeply involved in team prayers; for a time, he even led them. In 2005, school officials received complaints that he was leading prayers and asked him to stop participating.  He sued the school board seeking to be allowed to bow his head and kneel when students led their own prayers. A lower-court judge found that should be allowed.

The East Brunswick Board of Education appealed Cavanaugh's ruling, saying that by taking a knee and bowing his head, Borden was endorsing religion whether he mouthed the words with his players or not.   The appeal was taken over by Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a Washington, D.C., group that opposes prayer in schools.   "We find that based on the history of Borden's conduct with the team's players, his acts cross the line and constitute an unconstitutional endorsement of religion," the judges wrote in the ruling.


(Excerpt) Read more at nj.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; US: New Jersey
KEYWORDS: 1stamendment; firstamendment; prayerinschool; publicschools; schoolprayer; schools; voluntaryprayer
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1 posted on 04/15/2008 9:12:32 PM PDT by Coleus
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To: Coleus

so much for freedom of religion. the government is telling individuals how to pray.


2 posted on 04/15/2008 9:13:56 PM PDT by ilgipper
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To: metmom; Tired of Taxes; DaveLoneRanger

.


3 posted on 04/15/2008 9:16:33 PM PDT by Coleus (Abortion and Physician-assisted Murder (aka-Euthanasia), Don't Democrats just kill ya?)
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To: ilgipper

This country gets sicker with each passing day.

Shame on the school officials and the court. Each one of you should lose your jobs over this.


4 posted on 04/15/2008 9:22:02 PM PDT by A_Former_Democrat
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To: Coleus

Keep praying , Coach.


5 posted on 04/15/2008 9:22:16 PM PDT by CindyDawg
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To: Coleus

Those judges are absolutely insane. Run them out of office by any means necessary.


6 posted on 04/15/2008 9:22:27 PM PDT by wastedyears (The US Military is what goes Bump in the night.)
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To: Coleus

This ruling is sickening. I am glad our founding fathers don’t have to see what we have come to.


7 posted on 04/15/2008 9:22:35 PM PDT by KittyKares (.)
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To: Coleus

So let me get this straight. A moronic “judge” has told an American that he is not allowed to pray in public? Welcome to Amerika! Where the First Amendment only applies to loudmouth, protesting DemocRATS, their toadies in the Liberal “media” and porn pimps. (Sorry for the redundancy at the end there).


8 posted on 04/15/2008 9:24:31 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (Help make the world "a better place!" De-Globalize yourself.)
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To: wastedyears

Judicial activism at its finest.


9 posted on 04/15/2008 9:24:31 PM PDT by Seven Minute Maniac
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To: ilgipper
also when...

I always cringe at this crummy interpretation of the 1st amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;...

I wonder if these judges even read the 1st amendment. They always cite the first part and ignore the second part.
10 posted on 04/15/2008 9:29:29 PM PDT by stylin19a
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To: Coleus

Alliance for the Separation of School & State
http://www.schoolandstate.org/home.htm


11 posted on 04/15/2008 9:31:32 PM PDT by The Spirit Of Allegiance (Public Employees: Honor Your Oaths! Defend the Constitution from Enemies--Foreign and Domestic!)
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To: Coleus
... which pits the right to free speech against the freedom from official establishment of a religion...uh, actually there's a second phrase to that part of the first amendment which lots of people including these judges seem to overlook - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free expression thereof..." - if one is stupid enough to actually believe that a coach praying with his team is tantamount to Congress making a law, one should be consistent in one's stupidity and believe that said law should not prohibit the coach from praying with his team......
12 posted on 04/15/2008 9:37:31 PM PDT by Intolerant in NJ
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To: Intolerant in NJ

It isn’t Congress making a law forbidding the coach from praying, so the school can get away with this crap.


13 posted on 04/15/2008 9:46:45 PM PDT by Kirkwood (Ask me again tomorrow.)
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To: Intolerant in NJ
uh, actually there's a second phrase to that part of the first amendment which lots of people including these judges seem to overlook - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free expression thereof..."

The First Amendment actually states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exersize thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech . . ."

In other words, the First Amendment probits the Congress from interfering with the establishment of any recognized religion, and cannot prevent people from exersizing their religious beliefs. Unfortunately, thanks to the liberal idiots in this country, the First Amendment has been bastardized by the liberal idiotic judges into something they can use against people who believe in God and Christ.

14 posted on 04/15/2008 10:23:46 PM PDT by SoldierDad (Proud Dad of a 2nd BCT 10th Mountain Soldier home after 15 months in the Triangle of death)
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To: Coleus

But TIZA in MN can teach Islam and hold prayers but no one will stand up to CAIR. Disgurting cowards.


15 posted on 04/16/2008 12:36:27 AM PDT by informavoracious (God BLESS America and BXVI)
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To: Coleus

Can’t bow his head? Just tell these commies he was checking to see if the players all had their shoes tied.

Kneeling? Still looking for that contact lens he lost last year.


16 posted on 04/16/2008 3:23:06 AM PDT by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
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To: Coleus

In ‘85 and ‘86, as a team, we said the I Prayer before every game!


17 posted on 04/16/2008 3:54:27 AM PDT by jughandle
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To: jughandle

“I Prayer” = Lords Prayer. oops


18 posted on 04/16/2008 3:57:51 AM PDT by jughandle
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To: DaveLoneRanger; 2Jedismom; aberaussie; Aggie Mama; agrace; Antoninus; arbooz; bboop; bill1952; ...

ANOTHER REASON TO HOMESCHOOL

This ping list is for the “other” articles of interest to homeschoolers about education and public school. This can occasionally be a fairly high volume list. The main Homeschool Ping List handles the homeschool-specific articles. I hold both the Homeschool Ping List and the Another Reason to Homeschool Ping list. Please freepmail me to let me know if you would like to be added to or removed from either list, or both.
19 posted on 04/16/2008 5:08:26 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: ilgipper

And the muslims are pushing for prayer times, prayer rooms, special everything to accommodate their religious beliefs and we just bend over for them.


20 posted on 04/16/2008 5:09:54 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Coleus
Courts never address the underlying problem.

Government schools, the First Amendment and freedom of conscience can NOT coexist. This is issue that is **always** ignored in these court rulings.

There are 2 competing actions here, and the 2 can not be exercised simultaneously, and it puts the school in a Catch 22.

1) The coach will not pray.
This action impinges upon the coach's First Amendment Right to free speech and exercise of his religion. It also teaches the children that this coach ( a government representative) rejects God. Rejecting God in one's life is NOT a religiously neutral lesson. Rejection of God will have non-neutral political, cultural, and religious consequences for the student.

2) The school will allow the coach to pray.
This action imposes upon the non-religous students a school sanctioned religious activity. Surely if a citizen has a right to exercise his religion, he also has a right not to have religion imposed upon him by the government.

Solution: Begin the process or privatizing universal K-12 education. Let these matters be privately decided among parents, principals, teachers, and coaches.

Also.....As these First Amendment conflicts arise in other government institutions, it is best to get government out of as much as possible.

21 posted on 04/16/2008 5:45:21 AM PDT by wintertime (Good ideas win! Why? Because people are not stupid.)
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To: wintertime

I’ll bet if he got on his knees and faces toward the East and banged his head on the floor and shouted Allah
Akbar not a word would have been said out of shear panic.


22 posted on 04/16/2008 6:54:18 AM PDT by snowman1
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To: Kirkwood
It isn’t Congress making a law forbidding the coach from praying, so the school can get away with this crap...but leftists have used the first amendment to stop even those who want to have public prayer or display of the ten commandments by blurring the specific mention of Congress into, as the story mentions, "official" or other approximations and claiming that the intended activity is therefore unconstitutional because some governmental agent like a school or courthouse is involved - what's really unconstitutional is this substitution or, if they insist on seeing the school as being the same as the Congress, the ignoring of the freedom of exercise phrase which should prohibit the school from getting away with it........
23 posted on 04/16/2008 10:05:22 PM PDT by Intolerant in NJ
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