After Lengthy Legal Battle, School Board Emerges Victorious Over Creationist Science Teacher

In a case that’s lasted more than five years, there’s finally a happy resolution in the legal battle between Creationist teacher John Freshwater and the Mount Vernon City School District Board of Education.

A quick refresher: In 2008, school board members voted 5-0 to fire Freshwater, a Mount Vernon Middle School science teacher, after learning that he had preached Creationism to the students, handed out flyers in class urging kids to attend a presentation by the “Answers in Genesis” ministry, left the Bible out on his desk during class even after being told to stop, hung a Ten Commandments sign in his classroom, offered extra credit to students who watched the Ben Stein pro-Intelligent Design movie Expelled, and burned a student in the arm with a Tesla coil… in the shape of a cross:

That set off a long appeals process that culminated with a 4-3 decision by the Ohio Supreme Court yesterday in favor of the district. The Court said the district was right to fire Freshwater for his insubordination.

The decision holds little back:

Freshwater not only ignored the school district’s directive, he defied it. After he was directed to remove the items, Freshwater deliberately added to them, incorporating the Oxford Bible and Jesus of Nazareth into the classroom. He then refused to remove his personal Bible from his desk, and refused to remove a depiction of former President George W. Bush and Colin Powell and others in prayer from his wall.

Freshwater is fully entitled to an ardent faith in Jesus Christ and to interpret Biblical passages according to his faith. But he was not entitled to ignore direct, lawful edicts of his superiors while in the workplace.

It’s a victory for anyone who opposes proselytization in public schools:

John Freshwater (via the Columbus Dispatch)

“Public schools are for teaching, not preaching,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “Freshwater not only violated that principle, he openly defied the orders of his superiors. That’s not what freedom of religion is about.”

Americans United added, however, that the dissenting justices did us all a disservice by suggesting that teaching Creationism was all a part of “academic freedom”:

“It is shocking that any judge would conclude teaching creationism is part of ‘academic debate’ in 2013,” Lynn said. “The U.S. Supreme Court ruled long ago that creationism is a sectarian idea that does not belong in public schools, and I am alarmed that jurists would buy into the bogus claims of creationism proponents.”

Regardless of the dissenters, the fact is that Freshwater won’t be back in a public school classroom anytime soon. He was unqualified to teach science and it’s about time the courts recognized that.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Thiriel

    Not to mention HE BURNED A CHILD. Purposefully. I certain as f*ck wouldn’t allow anyone who hurt a child on purpose near a classroom. Certainly not one who did it twice, in order to make a cross.

    I’ve been working at an after-school day care and part of my instructions is that physical contact is to be at a minimum, and that I can’t hurt or injure the child purposefully. Playing tag and semi-contact foot-ball is one thing. Intentionally burning them is another.

    Sure, there are times I want to give them a tap on the back of the head, but I can’t and if I do, I can be fired, and rightfully so. So why are these people talking about his faith and the poor education he gave, rather than the harm he inflicted?

    It’d be wonderful if being a poor teacher meant that something had to be done, get more training/funding for teachers and raise the standards for math and science and a mandatory class on why secular education is important.

    I’m happy that Freshwater will no longer be teaching children, but I’m wondering if it was done for the right reasons.

  • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

    4 to 3??

    • 3lemenope

      That was my WTF moment as well.

    • Sven2547

      A friend of mine, a Nigerian immigrant, scoffed when I told him that nearly half of Americans think the Earth is less than 10,000 years old. He refused to believe that so many people could be so clueless.

      Lately, he has been shocked to learn his faith in humanity was misplaced.

      • Johnee

        Yeah.

        Hey, I’ve got an idea. Since these folks are so about “equal time” and “letting the students decide for themselves”, let’s give all the Chariots of the Gods folks equal time too! After all, there are some (seemingly) intelligent people that insist that they have plenty of evidence to show that extraterrestrials shaped mankind’s evolution from ape like creatures to Homo Sapiens; not to mention that they were instrumental in the development of ancient civilizations.

        Since these creationist/dominionists are so damn consistent (snark) about everything, they shouldn’t have any problem with any other alternate views of creation being presented in class besides theirs….right? Yeha Right!!!

        • The Other Weirdo

          Your tone suggests you don’t believe Stargate to be a realistic depiction of history. Surely not. It ran on the History Channel and everything.

          • Johnee

            Really? The History Channel? Damn. I stand corrected.

            Guess I’m gonna have to re-evaluate my views about Sasquatch as well. After all, Finding Bigfoot is on Animal Planet, and that’s about as hard science as you can get. LOL

          • Leiningen’s Ants

            AncientALIENS!.gif

        • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

          And time to those Zeitgeist: The Move proponents as well. Heck, let’s let the Lyndon LaRouche nutjobs come and speak as well. And some expert on the shape-shifting lizard people that run the world. Are they the Illuminati too? I forget!

          • pl1224

            This is completely off topic, but I have to ask–is your username a play on the term “heldentenor”?

            • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

              About 12 years ago or so I used to frequent a chatroom filled with opera singers who were bored at their day jobs. One of my friends (I knew her in real life, not just online) was using the name Off-coloratura as a reference to the P.D.Q. Bach opera The Stoned Guest. Sorry this is all terribly nerdy and obscure. At the end of this little one-act opera parody the entire cast is rescued (in a parody of the 18th century practice of improbably happy endings to what should otherwise be tragedies) by a St Bernard. The role of the St Bernard is to be taken (according to the score) by a houndentenor. (A combination of the dog and the German heroic tenor Fach.) Since I sometimes sing Wagner and Strauss (for money even!) I thought it was funny. Everyone else in the chatroom did too and I use it to this day. I kept it when I began posting here and elsewhere to make things simpler for me remembering ID’s and passwords (I am a tenor after all!) That was probably way more than you wanted to know. The short answer, actually, would have been “yes.”

              • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                Cool, thanks!

              • pl1224

                Not to worry–I regard fluent, articulate long-windedness as a supreme virtue. So you sing opera at least semi-professionally–how wonderful! Do you always sing from the German Romantic repertoire or do you also tackle the spinto roles from Verdi’s verismo works?

                I’ve been in love with opera since i was 10 years old–I’m almost 65 now–and I love to sing. However, I’ve only had a few years’ worth of lessons, so I content myself with singing first soprano in the chorus of my small New England city’s symphony orchestra. Actually, art is my real passion–I’m a far better artist than I am a singer.

                Anyway, thank you for the very interesting explanation of the origin of your username–very imaginative and original–I like that! Peace!!!

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  I was singing professionally. Now I’m back in school to get my doctorate so I can teach. I’m still singing. I sing whatever I think I can sing well and someone will pay me to sing. I also did a little musical theater. (It’s actually not unusual for guys like me to have spent some time in musicals or the baritenor roles in operetta.) I have sung some Verdi. A lot of it is just a step too high for my voice, but I have sung Riccardo (Ballo), Macduff, Manrico and bits of Otello. I have also sung things like Pinkerton, Luigi (Il Tabarro) and have Canio coming up next spring. Oh and Idomeneo (Mozart).

                  BTW, thank you for contributing to your community’s artistic culture. We need more art, music and literature in these times and I’m afraid we’re not getting enough. It’s interesting when I participate in something where we take music to people, how much they enjoy it. They are starving for great art and music and don’t even know that’s what they are hungry for. Every contribution brings a great deal to your community. Brava!

                • pl1224

                  Thank you–good luck with your doctoral studies! :-)

      • DavidMHart

        That’s harsh criticism indeed coming from someone whose home country has its very own terrorist organisation dedicated to the eradication of ‘western-style education’.

        [Edit: I'm sorry, people; I'd like to retract the above, if you will allow me. It was intended as a comment against US creationists, comparing them unfavourably to a terrorist group from Nigeria, but it came out as sounding like a comment against Nigerians in general. I hope you will accept my apology for causing offence, and I shall try to proof-read more carefully in future.]

        • Leiningen’s Ants

          Sooooo that’s what YOU took away from Sven###s comment, hmm?

          I’m guessing “Nigerian” caught your eye and then that cocktail of electrochemical nonsense between your shoulders decided, “Hey, who’s that person to talk about my ‘Murica!”

          Your little white hood might be showing a bit. But I’d never down vote you. Hell, have an upvote for free speech.

          • DavidMHart

            I’m talking about Boko Haram (and for what it’s worth I’m not American). When the pro-ignorance forces in your country are shocking even to someone who comes from a country that has explicitly pro-ignorance terrorists, you know you’ve got problems.

            Though re-reading my comment, I can see that ‘That’s harsh criticism’ could be read as a sort of “That’s rich coming from X…”, which is not what I meant.

        • Sven2547

          Boko Haram is a terrorist organization that most assuredly does NOT compose half of the Nigerian people, for starters. Of course he knows there are radical fringe elements occupying small percentages of the population.

      • pl1224

        I’ll bet he’d be even more surprised if you told him that a fair number of Americans, especially ultra-traditionalist Roman Catholics, believe in geocentrism–i.e. the idea that the sun and the rest of the universe revolves around the earth once a day. They insist that Copernicus and Galileo were, and still are, wrong.

        • Gehennah

          Wow really? I’ve seen a few pushing lately that science has now proven that (pretty much everything is expanding away from the Earth) but the only “evidence” of it was an experiment in Russia that, as far as I know, has yet to go to peer review.

          • pl1224

            Yeah, really–I’m not making it up. Google “Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX), geocentrism” and prepare to explore the frontiers of willful ignorance.

    • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

      tl;dr
      I decided to read (eh, skim) through the 60+ page decision to try to better understand the split. In doing so, it turns out that the Tesla coil burning incident was not part of the Ohio Supreme Court’s decision. In fact, the school was never originally going to fire the teacher over the burning. They just told him not to do it again and put it away for good. He complied. But it led to the family of the student complaining about the teacher’s religious material on his desk and walls. The school instructed him to remove it all, but instead he added more to it. Later they decided to terminate him because of a combination of the burning, insubordination, and not adhering to the curriculum. The OSC upheld the termination based on the insubordination and curriculum issue.

      Interestingly, the justices in the majority wrote that it was wrong for the school to demand the removal of the teacher’s bible from his desk. But the two other religious books (checked out from the school library after the demand) constituted the insubordination. The dissenting judges argued that if it was wrong of the school to demand the removal of his bible, then why does the insubordination stand for the other material. One of the judges also wrote that the Bush/Powell prayer posters were provided by the school and displayed in other classes. (?)

      Anyway, the dissenters also made the ridiculous claim that the outside religious material used by the teacher during his evolution lessons was appropriate because it attempted to foster critical thinking about the topic. And the fact that the students’ standardized test scores were good indicates that the teacher was doing his job.

      Basically, they dissented because it wasn’t really insubordination and he was actually teaching the curriculum, even if the outside sources were not part of the curriculum.

      If I missed something or got something wrong, please correct me. Like I said, I just skimmed through it for the gooey stuff.

      • nowaRINO

        He has been teaching his theology for years as scientific truth, not just as a taking point. He has raised money for his defense in only religious circles. While this is not a legal argument…get thee to the nunnery

        His very vocal defense (outside the court) in the central Ohio area has been God trumps his employer, thus he cannot be violating law. He constructed his own cross to be a martyr.

      • David S.

        Even if it was wrong for them to demand to remove the Bible, shouldn’t he comply while following the appeal process? I’m sure if he’d backed off temporarily, the ACLJ or someone (maybe even the ACLU) would have written him a nice letter to give to them, and they would have backed down. The way he handled it definitely was insubordination.

        • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

          To be clear, I was only summarizing some parts of the decision. I don’t disagree with the decision. It was a strange claim by the dissenters that it was not insubordination when the teacher put more religious material on his desk. It was basically the teacher giving his middle finger to the school.

      • Brian K

        Thanks for the summary! People look at me like I’m some kind of mutant when I discuss legal precedent for court decisions. If it doesn’t directly address their emotional narratives, they just aren’t interested.

        • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

          No problem. But honestly, this was my first time going through one of these decisions. I’ll probably start looking at more of them though! It’s interesting to see how some of these justices rationalize their arguments.

    • Brett N

      That’s as good as we can ask for in this country right now, I’m afraid. Truly, we have much work ahead.

    • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt Eggler

      I was just going to say who the fuck are the three imbeciles who voted in support of him? Does the Ohio Supreme Court issue dissenting statements so we can read these morons’ arguments?

      • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

        It’s part of the linked decision. I kinda summarized it in my other comment below. It was a bizarre ruling overall.

    • WillBell

      I could understand that if the issue was just creationism/christianity in the classroom but WTF HE BURNED A CROSS IN SOMEONE’S ARM.

      • James Stevenson

        This. So much this. The rest of what happened is shocking but pretty much white noise compared to ‘the teacher intentionally burned a kid’

      • sware73

        If you hadn’t said it, I was about to. Thank you!

  • Fallulah

    HE BURNT HIS STUDENT IN THE SHAPE OF A CROSS??? Umm THAT is the most shocking thing to me…this guy is loonie tunes and how cray-cray are the 3 justices that voted in his favor?? Wow America…just wow.

    • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

      How “cray-cray” are some Americans? Do you really want to know? The truth might scar you. This isn’t the wizard of oz, where behind the curtain is a little old white man pulling levers. No, behind this curtain, is a pack of little old white men,… with rabies and guns, and they vote.

      So if you want to look behind the curtain you can, but don’t blame me if you can sleep at night. http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/11/20/christian-teacher-fired-after-allegedly-criticizing-evolution-and-refusing-to-remove-religious-posters-loses-latest-court-battle/

      • Pepe

        Fuck!

      • Jeff

        I hate you. I just blasted an extra 20 points in my blood pressure by following the link, then reading the damn comments. You need a better warning on that link. I need to find a different country to live in (I’m in Texas), and my “faith” in humanity just fell off a cliff. We’re doomed. I think the Yellowstone Caldera just needs to get it over with and let the survivors start over….

        • Leiningen’s Ants

          We’re doomed. I think the Yellowstone Caldera just needs to get it over with

          Vancouver, Vancouver, this is it! *static*

        • tracy two crows

          Well,mine did too till I kept reading.We have quite a few over there that are putting the Christian taliban to the “Blazes” with straight up stone cold factual rebuttals.And it’s a 60/40 split,Science has the favor.Maybe not all is lost just quite yet.Hold off on the Yellowstone Light show a bit maybe? ;)

          • Jeff

            I wish I could, but facts, though interesting, are irrelevant to “True Believers”, especially those that think End Times are just around the corner and they would be a good thing. Of course, if we got the light show, survivors might suddenly go on the “we displeased god” chant, and we get even crazier folks. Well, as crazy. I think crazier is difficult to do….

      • L.G. Keltner

        Ow. My head hurts after reading the comments. I know a good portion of my fellow Americans are crazy, but seeing such a pure concentration of nutjobs in one place is painful.

      • Matthew Baker

        The Blaze the last bastion of true journalism and when I say journalism I mean the William Randolph Hearst type.

    • Art_Vandelay

      Right…I mean shouldn’t this legal battle be over how much time he gets in jail rather than whether or not he still gets to teach kids?

    • Alierias

      Yeah, I, or my parents, would have DEMANDED an arrest for assault against this nutjob…

  • Brian K

    Do you have any more context for the burning a student thing? That’s a little outlandish.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      If memory serves, it’s not like he forced the kids to submit to it. The zapping was voluntary, kind of a “proof of toughness” macho thing. I’m not sure if they knew they were getting a cross, but I don’t think it really makes much difference.

      Not that I’m defending him. It’s just that if this was, for example, his version of corporal punishment, then it would have been a lot more clear cut (I hope).

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        Considering minors can’t get tattoos or piercings, or play school sports (I’m pretty sure in most states) without parent consent, I think I’d tend to agree.

        I’m a bit torn because I’m in favor of empowering kids to make their own decisions, but not about adults putting kids into situations where peer pressure is likely to make them choose dumb things.

      • baal

        Um, electrical burns are really painful. It’s on par with getting whipped with a single tail. It’s orders of magnitude more pain than say a paddling. In no event should a child ever be considered for this in the least way. The harm is in the offering and well before the actual burnings.

        • https://soundcloud.com/eddieboydmusic flyb

          Quick anecdote: Many years ago I was once part of an NIH pain study in which I was required to undergo a series of pain tests in exchange for free removal of my wisdom teeth (my parents didn’t have much money). Part 1 consisted of my sitting in a chair with my left hand on a computer mouse and my right arm outstretched, palm up, so the researcher could burn my arm with a copper tipped device. She would hold it on my skin for a couple seconds and I would click the corresponding pain level with the mouse. Ten being the highest. Part 2 was the same thing only I was administered a IV fluid (which may or may not have been real drugs) during the pain applications. I was then immediately wheeled into surgery to remove my teeth. Anyway, the highest levels of the pain was comparable to a painful bee sting I guess. And after both times I had little red marks all up and down my lower arm! Fun times.

        • Shadist

          It depends on how the mark was given. I’ve had a lot of time with violet wands that can leave very similar marks without resulting pain. Not saying it’s the same with what this guy used… but that kind of marking coming from a testla coil could feel like a prolonged static shock.

      • Mario Strada

        Even if a student agrees to be permanently branded (if that’s the effect) it means nothing since they are minors.

        Believe me, I have been trying to find any attenuating circumstance just as an intellectual exercise to see if I could guess how the TP people would excuse the behavior. Couldn’t find any.

        • onamission5

          Exactly. This was a branding, not a mild shock. Teachers are not allowed to perform body modification on their students regardless of whether the students volunteer, because they are minors, and cannot legally consent to such things.
          We couldn’t even watch R rated movies at my high school without parental consent.

    • eric

      Its uncontested that he used a tesla coil on kids’ arms. He admitted doing it, with multiple kids over multiple years. He even said other teachers did it. The kids volunteered and everyone (at the time) probably thought it was fairly harmless.
      However the invetigator hired to look into all the charges recommended the administration not pursue that case. The admin probably agreed that some of their other charges were stronger, so they dropped this one.

    • phantomreader42

      What possible context could make branding a child acceptable?

  • dandaman

    With all of the out of work teachers who are qualified, how is it possible he got the job in the first place?

  • Oranje

    I’m honestly scared it was only 4–3.

    • A3Kr0n

      Honestly, it pisses me off.

      • Anymouse

        I honestly don’t know how to respond.

        • eonL5

          As always, respond honestly.

    • nowaRINO

      We vote for our Supreme Court in Ohio…and only the Teavangelicals really pay attention.

  • MyScienceCanBeatUpYourGod

    Burned a student with a Tesla coil?

    Why is he not in jail for assaulting a minor?

  • David

    Who cares about him being fired. This guy should be in jail for assault.

  • IHateFatChicks

    Good riddance.

  • Shadist

    Gods… I thought this was over some time ago. I lived in the next town over when this happened and I don’t remember anyone breing much on his side. Everyone I knew thought he should get fired after the bs he pulled.

    Although the court split in an amazingly stupid way I’m glad it’s come down as it has.

  • Wolfen

    The fact that there were 3 judges that voted against this, is an absolute outrage.

  • rpjohnston

    I don’t understand this at all. Most of the details in this are frankly irrelevant: burning a child is assault, child abuse and probably a host of other CRIMINAL charges. I do not understand how he is not only not locked up in jail, not only went to the OSC in the appeal to keep his job, but that the minority half of the court agreed that criminal child abuse is not sufficient grounds to terminate a teacher. This frightens me deeply.

  • The Starship Maxima

    That it took five years for this lunatic’s firing to be upheld makes me question the judicial system.

  • Freddy Pinchers

    That guy even looks like trouble. Hmmm, was the politically correct of me?

  • sTv0

    Anybody here read the court findings? Holy Smokes™!! I recommend reading the dissenting opinions by the three religitards…er, I mean judges…who wrote in support of the defendant. You’ll find every maneuver known to xTians to squirm and twist and bend to avoid the truth. Truly amazing that those three judges were appointed/elected to the Ohio Supreme Court. Their opinions are laughable, their reasoning controverted, and their conclusions juvenile to the point of absurdity. And their mouthwash ain’t cuttin’ it.

  • Bones Thompson

    He burnt a student on purpose. He was unqualified to teach anything or to be around children at all.

  • Psychotic Atheist

    For those outraged about the cross burning, no criminal charges but civil case was brought and was settled. This is what he used according to the complaint. It puts out about 50,000V and the manufacturer states one should not touch or contact the output.

    • Mario Strada

      What is the purpose of this gizmo besides making sparks?

      • FTP_LTR

        What? Suddenly, making big sparks isn’t enough reason to have one of these gizmos? What is the world coming to…

      • Psychotic Atheist

        The blurb speaks of detecting leaks. Basically you wave it over your pipe or whatever and any cracks or pinhole leaks will cause a spark to arc and make a loud noise in proximity to the coil. It can also be used to ionize gas (for instance, neon signs) or to start lamps (in apparently, the printing industry)

      • Psychotic Atheist

        I thought I’d answered this, but it appears to have vanished. Maybe I’m being dense. If you read the pdf, it details some intended uses. It seems to be useful for detecting pinhole leaks and ionizing gasses.

  • Gehennah

    He burned a cross into a student’s arm, this alone should have been reason to for dismissal, and why any judges would dissent on the decision based upon this single aspect just boggles my mind.
    And the rest of it was a clear violation of the constitution. It was him, as a government employee, showing preference to his religion to everything else in the classroom. He’s cool to do whatever he wants on his free time, but while he is on the job as a teacher.

    • Madison Blane

      I think the test for religious people sitting on the bench should always be: How would I feel if this person were of an opposing religion and doing this exact thing? Would I approve of this behavior if this person were not of my same religion?
      I think Judges are too often blinded because the person is of their particular flavor of religion so they see no harm done.
      I have a Christian friend who was discussing the prayer before government meetings with me recently. They saw no harm in it. When I brought up the fact that freedom of religion meant that it opened the door for everyone of every religion to pray before our govt. and asked her how she would feel if Muslims became a majority in America and they prayed to Allah to open congressional days, she reconsidered immediately. It was a remarkable turnaround in only a few sentences. And she agreed that religion and government are best separated.

  • pl1224

    There is one aspect of this story that I can’t understand at all. Freshwater used a Tesla coil to burn the image of a cross into a middle-school-age student’s arm. That is an assault upon and the permanent disfigurement of a minor child. Why is this man not in jail?

    • Gehennah

      Because it wasn’t forced apparently. The kids volunteered. If I were a parent, I’d still press charges though because a child cannot consent to something like that.

      • pl1224

        That’s what I thought. After all, in most states a parent’s consent in needed in order for a minor to get a tattoo. I can’t imagine any parent being okay with a child being burned, and if the parent(s) actually consented to this act prior to its being done, then the state should be bringing charges of child endangerment. Of course, parts of Ohio are very conservative and fundamentalist Christianity is prevalent, so maybe some things aren’t quite the issue they would be say, here in New England.

        • Madison Blane

          A teenager needs consent for an ear piercing! Scarification is considered an even more dangerous procedure (by the medical board that regulates body modification) because of the infection risk. Burning like this IS scarification, it is permanent body modification, and there is no way this child could have given legal consent.
          As a parent -even if I had been a religious parent and perhaps even more-so if I had been a religious parent- I would have sued to have the scar removed, for the pain and suffering AND for our legal fees!

  • http://yogscast.wikia.com/wiki/User:Supertoastfairy Supertoastfairy

    “handed out flyers in class urging kids to attend a presentation by the “Answers in Genesis” ministry,”
    Eh, not too surprised by this.

    “left the Bible out on his desk during class even after being told to stop, ”
    Annoying, but not unheard of. I give him an irksome yawn over this.

    “hung a Ten Commandments sign in his classroom, ”
    Now he’s just trying too hard. Nobody cares about your stupid posters dude!

    “offered extra credit to students who watched the Ben Stein pro-Intelligent Design movie Expelled, ”
    This one is just stupid, makes he pinch my forehead in exasperation.

    “and burned a student in the arm with a Tesla coil… in the shape of a cross:”
    I’ve just spit my drink all over my keyboard in shock. He BURNED A STUDENT IN THE ARM!?! What the hell is wrong with these people!?

  • diogeneslamp0

    If a Muslim Crescent were burned into their arms, these judges might finally understand how other people feel about losing their freedom and equality because of religious thugs.

  • TeaBaggersMakeMeSick

    OK, I get how the court could split because there are those (Republicans, let’s call a spade a spade) who will put ideology above the Constitution, but how could anyone defend this guy after HE MUTILATED A STUDENT? I mean, seriously, did everybody miss the part where he burned a kid?

  • littlewarriorfox

    I think the priorities have been a little skewed here. WHY is this man not in jail for assault and battery?

  • Kenneth Myers

    Praise all mighty Athieismo for his wonderous works!

  • Colin Harwood

    Creationist science teacher? An oxymoron with way more moron than oxy. If he’d burned a cross on my child’s arm all his worries with the school board would be the least of his problems.

  • Bob Blaskiewicz

    Wow, I can’t believe that this was still going on. I remember writing about that…eons ago.


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