It’s okay for teachers to honor Buddha in their classrooms, but not God.
That’s what a 3-judge panel of the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held last month. The court ordered that all banners mentioning “God”, including “In God We Trust” be taken down. And we need your help to appeal that ruling.
The Court ridiculed the historical fact of “God’s role in our Nation’s history.”
The Court’s target was Brad Johnson, a highly respected math teacher for the Poway Unified School District in San Diego, CA.
That’s because for over two decades, Brad displayed banners in his classroom that included our national motto, “In God We Trust, ” and other patriotic phrases that mentioned God: “One Nation Under God, ” “God Bless America, ” and “God Shed His Grace On Thee.”
But in 2007, school officials ordered him to take down his banners because they promoted a Judeo-Christian viewpoint by referring to “God, ” and might offend a Muslim student.
A Double Standard. School officials left untouched: a 40-foot string of Tibetan prayer flags with images of Buddha strung across the classroom; posters of Hindu leader Mahatma Gandhi, Muslim leader Malcolm X, and Buddhist leader Dali Lama.
The School District admitted that Brad never attempted to proselytize his students; that he was one of the best math teachers in the District.
Rather than cave-in, Brad chose to fight with the help of the Thomas More Law Center. We agreed to represent Brad without charge. And ever since, Brad has been locked in a lengthy legal battle.
The Ninth Circuit’s opinion overruled a 2010 lower court decision which had held that the School District violated Brad Johnson’s constitutional rights when it ordered him to take down his classroom banners.
We will now appeal the decision to the entire Ninth Circuit bench by filing our petition for en banc review. If that’s not successful, we will petition the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.
At a time when public schools and federal courts are cleansing classrooms of America’s Christian heritage and undermining students’ sense of patriotism, this courageous Christian teacher is fighting back. Don’t let him fight alone.
The Thomas More Law Center is a national not-for-profit public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It defends America’s Judeo-Christian heritage and moral values, a strong national defense and an independent and sovereign United States of America.