I frequently speak about school districts that cave in at a simple threat of a lawsuit by groups such as the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the American Humanist Association. I often say that some of the administrative folks who represent these school districts need to develop some courage and take a stand for their religious liberty rather than quickly give it away. What we are beginning to see are some wonderful young people who have courage and are willing to take a stand for their beliefs.
Recently the American Humanist Association (AHA) filed a lawsuit in New Jersey. The AHA filed this lawsuit on behalf of a “family that objected to their child attending a school where the Pledge [of Allegiance] was said with under God included.”
Enter Samantha Jones. Samantha is a senior at Highland High School. This month Samantha sued to assure that she may continue to use the phrase “under God” when she says the Pledge of Allegiance. Samantha said this about her lawsuit:
When I stand up, put my hand over my heart and say the Pledge of Allegiance, I am recognizing that my rights come from God, not from the government.
Samantha is up against a group that just can’t take no for an answer. The American Humanist Association reminds me of the small child who just keep asking after their parent keeps telling them no. You see, the Massachusetts’ Supreme Judicial Court recently ruled against the AHA in a similar lawsuit in the case of Doe v. Acton-Boxborough Regional School District. In this ruling the court said this:
…the recitation of the pledge, which is entirely voluntary, violated neither the Constitution nor the statute [which prohibits discrimination in Massachusetts public school education]…
But yet the AHA keeps pushing. They even recently launched a campaign called, “Don’t Say the Pledge”. They are asking students to refuse to say the Pledge of Allegiance as long as it contains the words, “under God”. The AHA attorney said this:
Until the pledge is restored to its inclusive version, we can take it upon ourselves to refuse to participate in what’s become a discriminatory exercise.
Wow! The Pledge of Allegiance is a discriminatory exercise? Did you ever think you would hear that?
I think our student, Samantha Jones sums it up very well with this statement:
If anyone wants to remain silent, that is their right. But it is not their right to silence me.
Well said, Samantha. AHA folks…just choose to remain silent if you don’t want to say the Pledge of Allegiance. Stop acting like the child who has already been told no. I don’t think many folks would mind not hearing from you for a while.