The Freedom From Religion Foundation has targeted another group
of cheerleaders for making football banners with religious
messages, this time in Alabama.
The Kountze High School cheerleaders in Texas earlier waged a
battle against the FFRF and won. Now, cheerleaders at Marbury
High School in Deatsville, Alabama (about 20 miles north of
Montgomery), are fighting a similar battle for their right to
display religious messages at football games. Mat Staver of the Liberty Counsel says
the Kountze victory could be important.
"I think that decision will play a factor in
Alabama. It certainly gives good precedent. [It] doesn't directly
control because it's not in the same jurisdiction, but it certainly
does give good precedent regarding student-initiated speech,"
"After all, this is the students. They are creating the message,
and everyone knows that it's the cheerleaders' message; it's not
the school-endorsed message."
He insists it is the duty of the Liberty Counsel and other
Christians to push back against attacks on religious freedoms.
"If we're not there to defend our freedom, then what's going to
happen is groups like Freedom From Religion Foundation will speak
for us," the attorney warns. "And you know what they want: They
want to censor any Christian or religious viewpoint. So we've got
to push back -- and more often than not, when we do, we win."
According to Staver, the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion
Foundation has been trying to suppress religious expression in
public institutions and organizations for more than 30 years.