View Poll Results: Is the ruling listed correct

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Thread: Is This Ruling Correct?

  1. #31
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Federal court rules Wisconsin schools' graduations in church were unconstitutional | Fox News



    So the question is, is the ruling that holding a graduation ceremony for a public school in a church unconstitutional correct?

    Edit: for our centrist/independent posters, please choose the side closest to your views.
    generally no it would not be unconstitutional,unless the church had actually tried to impose religious indoctination.

    in many small towns a church is often used for many other things than a church.it widely depends on the size of the community.if the school had adequate space for a graduation ceremony,the church would have been uncalled for.but like i said many towns dont even have the luxory of a school big enough for a ceremony.


    in many towns churches are used for things like graduations,shelters,etc.and students seeing a cross is not religious indoctrinations,or else i could claim political ads as political indoctrinations,or atheist ads on billboards as religious/anti religious indoctrination.


    the true question comes on whether they used the building because it was needed,or whether they wanted a religious them.one would be constitutional and one wouldnt,per the first amendment.
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  2. #32
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    Most reasonable people would conclude that, even if not technically mandatory, attending a graduation ceremony is something that many people would feel obligated to do or at least strongly want to do. It's like saying that a football coach at a public school doesn't have a captive audience if he leads his athletes in prayer, since they can always quit the football team. Although technically true, most people would still consider that to be a captive audience. And the courts largely agree.
    Where is there a right to be on a football team? Where is there a right to graduate? Where is there a right to be at a graduation ceremony? Just because someone wants to do something, strongly or not, does not mean that they have a right to do something. And no, the only ones that consider it to be a "captive audiance" are those that want to be at one of those functions but don't want things that they disagree with around.

    And again, its not the first time the courts have been wrong and it won't be the last. Even you agree that "technically" what I have stated is true. And when it comes to the law that is what counts...what is "technically true". What people personally believe of how a law should be applied should have no bearing on how a law is actually applied.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    "Amendment 14, Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

    The bolded part is what extends the protections in the Bill of Rights, and applies them to the states as well as the federal government. Therefore it applies to public schools, which are appendages of the states.
    Yes I know. I've known that for a long time now. There's no need to repeat it in every single post. I've not once disputed it.



    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    "Passing a law" is a nebulous concept, because the state presumably *did* pass a law that established the public education system in that state, which ultimately led to the creation of this school. As far as the US Constitution is concerned, there are only two levels of government: The federal government and the state governments. All local entities like school districts are nothing more than an extension of the state governments.
    No, passing a law is not a "nebulous concept". A law is passed or it is not...in which case it is not a law. And yes I agree that the schools are an extension of the government. And when a school passes a rule or the government passes a law which state that students must follow a certain religion then you would have a point. However that has not been done here. No one was required to attend that ceremony. Which would put it in the realm of "captive audiance". And from the little information that was provided no one tried to force those churches beliefs onto anyone. Just because it was a church means nothing.

    Tell me...what is the difference between what happened with these schools and this...

    Is This Ruling Correct?-national_cemetery-jpg
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  3. #33
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kal'Stang View Post
    And again, its not the first time the courts have been wrong and it won't be the last. Even you agree that "technically" what I have stated is true. And when it comes to the law that is what counts...what is "technically true".
    Incorrect, sir. The courts generally look at laws in the context of how a reasonable person would behave.

    What people personally believe of how a law should be applied should have no bearing on how a law is actually applied.
    That doesn't make any sense. How else could you possibly apply the law? It is you who is arguing that the courts are mistaken in their longstanding interpretation of the 1st amendment...so it seems to me that this is PRECISELY what you "personally believe of how a law should be applied," which by your own logic should have no bearing on the law. Or were you just referring to what OTHER people personally believe, because YOUR personal beliefs on how the law should be applied are somehow special?

    I mean, if you want to argue that the courts have decided church-and-state cases incorrectly for the past several decades, I'm willing to hear that argument...but don't tell me that your opinions are the only valid ones (ESPECIALLY when your interpretation is not the judicial consensus), as I'll just roll my eyes.

    Yes I know. I've known that for a long time now. There's no need to repeat it in every single post. I've not once disputed it.
    Well, you were the one that asked me to show you where it said no government entity could promote a religion. If you already know the answer and you're just going to get annoyed hearing it again, maybe you shouldn't ask the question in the first place.

    No, passing a law is not a "nebulous concept". A law is passed or it is not...in which case it is not a law. And yes I agree that the schools are an extension of the government.
    Then we agree that the limitations on state power found in the Bill of Rights and 14th amendment also apply to schools.

    And when a school passes a rule or the government passes a law which state that students must follow a certain religion then you would have a point. However that has not been done here. No one was required to attend that ceremony. Which would put it in the realm of "captive audiance". And from the little information that was provided no one tried to force those churches beliefs onto anyone. Just because it was a church means nothing.
    Then what was the purpose of holding the graduation ceremony in a church? Like I said in my original post in this thread, I'm OK with it if it served some legitimate purpose (such as a lack of available secular venues)...but otherwise it serves as a completely unnecessary way of putting public school students (and their families) in an environment in which they may not be comfortable. And you are wrong about a "captive audience"; it doesn't necessarily mean that they are literally unable to leave or that they are required to attend. It can apply to any situation where opting out is impractical or undesirable.

    Tell me...what is the difference between what happened with these schools and this...

    Is This Ruling Correct?-national_cemetery-jpg
    Those crosses are on individual people's graves and are meant to honor them personally. If you have a loved one buried in Arlington, you can use a religious symbol on their grave if you want, or no symbol at all. If Arlington Cemetery was regularly advertising or cheerleading for a specific religion, that would be a problem.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 07-31-12 at 03:10 AM.
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  4. #34
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Ummm... Kandahar... opting out of a graduation ceremony is neither impractical or undesirable. Attending is completely subjective and has no bearing on whether someone graduates or not.
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    This is what I hate about politics the most, it turns people in snobbish egotistical self righteous dicks who allow their political beliefs, partisan attitudes, and 'us vs. them' mentality, to force them to deny reality.

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  5. #35
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Based on the facts presented in the OP I agree with the decision. Using the church building itself, though, I don’t have a problem with. If you are going to get tax exempt status I am all for allowing your facilities to be used for public events. The cross and the pamphlets, though, are a no-go if you want to keep it Constitutional IMO. Had those been removed for the ceremony I wouldn’t have a problem with it. But removing the cross might not have been practical.

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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Here's a little more information that I dug up in regards to ONE of these situations. This situation concerns the Elmbrook School District. Apparently, they held their graduation ceremonies in a supposedly non-denominational Christian "mega-church" for years, due to lack of comfort and air conditioning in their school's gym. The plaintiff's case cites that religious symbols were NOT covered up (the district asked, but the church refused) AND that there was some evangelism of students outside before graduation ceremonies commenced. Pamphlets proselytizing were also there. Seems to me that this goes a bit beyond just having the ceremony in a building. The church was absolutely wrong for their refusal to NOT do these things, but it was the district's responsibility. Seems to me that in this case, this was a good call.

    Here is the article discussing this:

    UPDATE: Elmbrook Schools Chief Disappointed in Church-Graduation Ruling - Brookfield, WI Patch
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wiseone View Post
    This is what I hate about politics the most, it turns people in snobbish egotistical self righteous dicks who allow their political beliefs, partisan attitudes, and 'us vs. them' mentality, to force them to deny reality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Navy Pride View Post
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    See with you around Captain we don't even have to make arguments, as you already know everything .
    Quote Originally Posted by CriticalThought View Post
    Had you been born elsewhere or at a different time you may very well have chosen a different belief system.
    Quote Originally Posted by ernst barkmann View Post
    It a person has faith they dont need to convince another of it, and when a non believer is not interested in listening to the word of the lord, " you shake the dust from your sandels and move on"

  7. #37
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCourtesy View Post
    Here's a little more information that I dug up in regards to ONE of these situations. This situation concerns the Elmbrook School District. Apparently, they held their graduation ceremonies in a supposedly non-denominational Christian "mega-church" for years, due to lack of comfort and air conditioning in their school's gym. The plaintiff's case cites that religious symbols were NOT covered up (the district asked, but the church refused) AND that there was some evangelism of students outside before graduation ceremonies commenced. Pamphlets proselytizing were also there. Seems to me that this goes a bit beyond just having the ceremony in a building. The church was absolutely wrong for their refusal to NOT do these things, but it was the district's responsibility. Seems to me that in this case, this was a good call.

    Here is the article discussing this:

    UPDATE: Elmbrook Schools Chief Disappointed in Church-Graduation Ruling - Brookfield, WI Patch


    This is one of those situations where your better off safe than sorry. The school district should have just found another place to hold the graduations to avoid all this.

  8. #38
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by lpast View Post
    This is one of those situations where your better off safe than sorry. The school district should have just found another place to hold the graduations to avoid all this.
    Yeah, as soon as the church refused to remove symbols and ESPECIALLY pamphlets, the red flags should have gone up. A hot football field is better than a lawsuit.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wiseone View Post
    This is what I hate about politics the most, it turns people in snobbish egotistical self righteous dicks who allow their political beliefs, partisan attitudes, and 'us vs. them' mentality, to force them to deny reality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Navy Pride View Post
    You can't paint everone with the same brush.......It does not work tht way.


    Quote Originally Posted by Wessexman View Post
    See with you around Captain we don't even have to make arguments, as you already know everything .
    Quote Originally Posted by CriticalThought View Post
    Had you been born elsewhere or at a different time you may very well have chosen a different belief system.
    Quote Originally Posted by ernst barkmann View Post
    It a person has faith they dont need to convince another of it, and when a non believer is not interested in listening to the word of the lord, " you shake the dust from your sandels and move on"

  9. #39
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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCourtesy View Post
    Yeah, as soon as the church refused to remove symbols and ESPECIALLY pamphlets, the red flags should have gone up. A hot football field is better than a lawsuit.

    Thats what made them wrong in my mind and caused the controversey...its a shame that so much today always has to wind up in a courtroom, which alot of times causes more animosity and friction when it could so easily be avoided most of the time.

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    Re: Is This Ruling Correct?

    The ruling was correct as far as I am concerned. To allow this would be to ignore the 1st and 14th Amendments and to allow this would act to endorse a religion in contravention to the aforementioned amendments and established law.


    The facts according to the case include: "The first time Central held its graduation in the sanctuary, the cross was covered, apparently by accident. During subsequent graduations, the Church refused Superintendent Gibson’s requests to veil the cross, in keeping with a general Church policy against covering its permanent religious displays. The Church did agree, however, to remove any non-permanent religious symbols from the dais. The chapel used by Central for its senior honors night also contains a cross.

    During the ceremonies, “graduating seniors . . . sit down in the front, center rows of pews of the [sanctuary’s] main level.” Guests sit in the other pews. The parties agree that “Bibles and hymnal books remain in all the pews,” as do a “yellow ‘Scribble Card for God’s Little Lambs,’ a pencil, a donation envelope entitled, ‘Home Harvest Horizon: offering to the work of Christ,’ ” and other religious literature. There is no evidence that any of these materials were placed in the pews specifically for the graduation ceremonies."

    Finally, the court ruled: "conducting a public school graduation ceremony in a church—one that among other things featured staffed information booths laden with religious literature and banners with appeals for children to join “school ministries”—runs afoul of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause as applied to the states via the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause....We conclude that the practice of holding high school graduation ceremonies in the Elmbrook Church sanctuary conveys an impermissible message of endorsement. Under the circumstances here, the message of endorsement carried an impermissible aspect of coercion, and the practice has had the unfortunate side effect of fostering the very divisiveness that the Establishment Clause was designed to prevent."

    http://www.au.org/files/2012-07-23%2...0en%20banc.pdf

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