Supreme Court Signal in Prayer Case Has Democrats Panicking
(LibertySons.org) – A former high school football coach’s case addressing his use of prayer on the field after games is before the US Supreme Court. Joseph A. Kennedy lost his job because the school district said he violated policies for displaying religious activity in the presence of students. The New York Times reported that after losses in two lower court cases, the Supreme Court may be leaning in Kennedy’s favor.
A football coach at a public high school in Washington State was suspended after students joined him on the field to pray after games.
The Supreme Court begins hearing arguments in his case against the school Monday morning. pic.twitter.com/XwbWgBmG3m
— CBS Mornings (@CBSMornings) April 25, 2022
Kennedy was an assistant football coach at Bremerton High School. He would pray on the 50-yard line after games. It began as a solitary activity, but soon students began joining him. The school issued him warnings, eventually suspending him and not renewing his contract when he didn’t stop.
Kennedy maintained his rights to freedom of speech and religion allowed him to continue his prayers, and the district’s policies violated those rights. The school district said the coach was acting as an agent of the school, making it seem like the district was promoting religion.
The Times reported that the justices had questions about what motivated the school’s actions. They asked about various hypothetical situations in which Kennedy’s praying would and would not be allowable. Justice Samuel Alito Jr. asked if the activity were something different, such as a protest, would the coach have faced any issues.
The justices also questioned the lower courts’ decisions, especially regarding free speech. Justices Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Thomas felt the appeals court had a concerning viewpoint on the right to free speech for teachers.
According to the Times, Justice Stephen G. Breyer said the case might be more about the facts than the law.
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