Broken Arrow accused of constitutional violation

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Feb 11, 2007
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#21
As a side question that will totally derail this thread - which I am ok with because it's been awhile since I've seen this asked - how do you jive those things? Teaching science and Sunday school. I'm not asking to be mean, I genuinely want to understand. They are so diametrically opposed to me, I don't know how anyone does both. I'd take an answer from anyone.
Why do you think that teaching science and Sunday school is "so diametrically apposed" ?
 

UrbanCowboy1

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#22
It's simple, science isn't a belief it's a process that either works or it doesn't, my spiritual beliefs are spiritual beliefs that I can't prove but I strongly believe. One of the most brilliant men I ever knew was one of my college professors that taught comparative anatomy and he was one of the greatest biblical scholars I ever knew.
Thanks for an honest answer. I really do appreciate that, but I have to lean into this a bit because it doesn't really answer my question. Which wins out when you read stories about a talking serpent? I remember thinking during my younger days when I was very religious, I just assumed that God made it happen because it must be literal. But that doesn't really leave me with a leg to stand in the modern world. If God bends the universe to his will, then science is worthless. Empirical evidence stops meaning anything because God could change it at any moment.
 
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UrbanCowboy1

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#23
Why do you think that teaching science and Sunday school is "so diametrically apposed" ?
If you follow a literal interpretation of the Bible, I don't see how they aren't. Everyone always gives the earth being created in six days, and that's a fair one. But lets even go to the New Testament. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27:52–53. Dead people just walking around. BFD, apparently. Science says that doesn't happen with people. No way, no how. So when someone says they follow science and religion, which wins out here?
 
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andylicious

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#24
On school grounds? Where you are an authority figure in or out of the classroom?
at the very least you are or a slippery sloop?
The courts are specific that when you are in your job capacity as a teacher you can't proselytize. They used to apply the Lemon Rule but as time has moved on that has moved to a more secular that doesn't allow for much religious expression in the government workplace.
 
Sep 22, 2011
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#25
A lot will depend on the details, if it was after the team was dismissed from practice and they said “for anyone who wants to stay we have some people who are going to be baptized” then they are probably OK, there have always been FCA meetings before and after games, but they are optional and typically held in a separate room or after the team has been dismissed. That being said coaches have often made the Lord’s Prayer or a prayer part of their pre/post game ritual, so I am interested if thes leads to a crackdown. As with most things coaches get away with a lot more than regular teachers do, and this is Oklahoma, so I don’t expect there to be a lot of punishment, maybe a “don’t do that anymore “
 

wrenhal

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#26
How is this a violation of anything ?
My novice understanding of "separation of church and state" is that public schools are allowed to teach religion from a historical standpoint, but they aren't allowed to preach/instruct whether or not it's right or wrong. I don't know the full details of what happened here, but it sounds like this may have been violated. Things like this probably shouldn't happen on school grounds.
It probably happened due to FCA. That would be my guess without reading any details.

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wrenhal

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#27
Churches, rivers, home, lakes, pools and even hot tubs in a pinch are for baptism, not football fields on school grounds. I've been a Baptist since nine months before I was born, but even I know you can't and shouldn't do this.
Who baptized them? If not a pastor, then definitely wrong authoritatively.

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steross

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#28
But it says it wasn't during practice. I know it was right after, but is there some time limit here? "You must wait 30 minutes between teaching science before you can baptize someone", lol. Would stand to reason that once practice, or in your case, science class, was over, then it's free game.
Couldn't you see a potential appearance of a conflict of interest between a coach, who is the one that decides what kids play/ don't play/ run extra sprints or whatever asking for volunteers to choose his religion directly after the practice in which he made those decisions?
And I think the comfort with this is that it is simply the local majority religion. If a coach post-practice converted 10 kids to Hindu, Islam, Satanism, or Wicca I doubt there would be any "what's the big deal?" posts here at all.
 
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#29
I'm curious what the parents thought about this. If I'm a parent, even one that is thrilled that my child decided to commit his life to Christ, but they were baptized without me even being a witness, I'd be pissed.
 
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#30
If you follow a literal interpretation of the Bible, I don't see how they aren't. Everyone always gives the earth being created in six days, and that's a fair one. But lets even go to the New Testament. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27:52–53. Dead people just walking around. BFD, apparently. Science says that doesn't happen with people. No way, no how. So when someone says they follow science and religion, which wins out here?
By the way, I agree with you, but I will enjoy following this conversation.
 

ScooberJake

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#31
If you follow a literal interpretation of the Bible, I don't see how they aren't. Everyone always gives the earth being created in six days, and that's a fair one. But lets even go to the New Testament. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27:52–53. Dead people just walking around. BFD, apparently. Science says that doesn't happen with people. No way, no how. So when someone says they follow science and religion, which wins out here?
I see your point. A literal interpretation of the Bible requires belief that God occasionally, at his discretion, suspends the natural laws of the universe.

On the other hand, science can't scientifically explain the hard things about the universe either. Things like the Big Bang are generally described as a "singularity". In other words "for some reason all of the laws of physics seem to have been suspended momentarily". Or dark matter. Or the imbalance of matter/anti-matter. Or life coming from non-life. Or everything in the universe suddenly appearing out of nothing, with no cause, for no reason.

IMO explaining those things as the work of a higher being is at least as plausible as anything proposed by physicists.
 

UrbanCowboy1

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#32
Couldn't you see a potential appearance of a conflict of interest between a coach, who is the one that decides what kids play/ don't play/ run extra sprints or whatever asking for volunteers to choose his religion directly after the practice in which he made those decisions?
And I think the comfort with this is that it is simply the local majority religion. If a coach post-practice converted 10 kids to Hindu, Islam, Satanism, or Wicca I doubt there would be any "what's the big deal?" posts here at all.
I would still say "what's the big deal", but that's just me. And if someone did say that to one of the religions you mentioned but didn't say it for Christianity then I'd say they were a hypocrite.

And I get that there's a potential conflict of interest. But the thread title is 'constitutional violation' and I just don't see that. The bolded part above is hypothetical. We don't know what happened. And the article made it seem like it was completely voluntary. Besides that, what's your hard rule here? "You can't talk about religion ever if you are a coach or teacher"? Because that's not gonna fly.
 

UrbanCowboy1

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#33
I see your point. A literal interpretation of the Bible requires belief that God occasionally, at his discretion, suspends the natural laws of the universe.

On the other hand, science can't scientifically explain the hard things about the universe either. Things like the Big Bang are generally described as a "singularity". In other words "for some reason all of the laws of physics seem to have been suspended momentarily". Or dark matter. Or the imbalance of matter/anti-matter. Or life coming from non-life. Or everything in the universe suddenly appearing out of nothing, with no cause, for no reason.

IMO explaining those things as the work of a higher being is at least as plausible as anything proposed by physicists.
I'll say that's very convenient of God to do that. He created the laws of the universe only to suspend them later. I'd say that's poor planning, lol. And beyond that, if this is the case it makes science irrelevant. You can't follow science if the rules can be suspended at will. It's whole schtick is that it's a process that's repeatable and follows empirical evidence. If someone truly believes that God suspends the laws of nature then you have to become a strict biblical literalist, don't you?

As for your second paragraph, you've got a 'God of the gaps'. Just because science cant explain something yet doesn't mean it's God. Germ theory is just 'God' until it's not. Relativity too. God gets put into smaller and smaller corners. And one day if science could explain everything, where would that leave God?


I honestly appreciate the responses. I don't mean to be disrespectful if I have been. I just still haven't found an adequate answer to my question on where science and religion disagree, how can someone 'follow' both?
 

oks10

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#34
https://www.publicradiotulsa.org/po...constitution-baptisms-school-grounds#stream/0

So, reading this it sounds like a church came in and baptized kids after practice and the coach was compelled to get baptized himself. The coach wasn't the one baptizing people. So, not as big of a misstep but I still don't see how any adult employee knew this was going to happen and thought it was a good idea. (Well, more didn't see this possibly being an issue than thinking it was a good idea.)
 
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llcoolw

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#35
But it says it wasn't during practice. I know it was right after, but is there some time limit here? "You must wait 30 minutes between teaching science before you can baptize someone", lol. Would stand to reason that once practice, or in your case, science class, was over, then it's free game.
I’m detecting someone working on their act. And if not, I’m pretty sure George Carlin went there about not baptizing until at least 30 min after you eat.

Just kidding. You might be the first.
 

UrbanCowboy1

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#36
I’m detecting someone working on their act. And if not, I’m pretty sure George Carlin went there about not baptizing until at least 30 min after you eat.

Just kidding. You might be the first.
Putting me and George Carlin in a single thought is the nicest thing anyone's ever said about me!!

And yeah, that part was definitely tongue in cheek, but I honestly don't think you can put a limit on it. If it's during school activities, it's not allowed. If it's outside school activities, it should be.
 

Binman4OSU

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#37
I try to put myself in the shoes of the person who is upset about this and see how I would feel of the role was reversed



If I had a child in football practice and the coach had "obviously" been talking about this process and how to give their lives to Allah and 10 people decided to immediately after practice have the coach help them become Muslims....how would I feel about that ? And How would I feel about this if it happened at my local public school with teachers helping students become Muslims

Because if you support what happened in BA, then you have to support teachers baptizing students into Islam on school grounds as well
 

CowboyJD

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#38
I try to put myself in the shoes of the person who is upset about this and see how I would feel of the role was reversed



If I had a child in football practice and the coach had "obviously" been talking about this process and how to give their lives to Allah and 10 people decided to immediately after practice have the coach help them become Muslims....how would I feel about that ? And How would I feel about this if it happened at my local public school with teachers helping students become Muslims

Because if you support what happened in BA, then you have to support teachers baptizing students into Islam on school grounds as well
Heck, Alabama just rescinded a law that banned the teaching of Yoga in public schools....though it still bans the use of Sanskrit names for the poses.
 

steross

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#39
I would still say "what's the big deal", but that's just me. And if someone did say that to one of the religions you mentioned but didn't say it for Christianity then I'd say they were a hypocrite.

And I get that there's a potential conflict of interest. But the thread title is 'constitutional violation' and I just don't see that. The bolded part above is hypothetical. We don't know what happened. And the article made it seem like it was completely voluntary. Besides that, what's your hard rule here? "You can't talk about religion ever if you are a coach or teacher"? Because that's not gonna fly.
You don't see a difference between a coach or teacher talking about religion in a general sense and baptizing someone to devote their life to Christ?


You think a parental reaction would be the same for:
Hey Johnny, how was school today?
Good, coach talked to us today about Mohammad and Islam.
-or-
Hey Johnny, how was school today?
Good, coach talked to us today about Mohammad and Islam. it was interesting and I really like coach so he asked for volunteers and I have now said my testimony to Islam in front of those with the faith so I am now a Muslim!

Finally, the reason it is possibly a constitutional violation IS because of the potential conflict of interest. Our forefathers wanted true freedom of religion and knew that members of government are influential. That is the point.
 

andylicious

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#40
You don't see a difference between a coach or teacher talking about religion in a general sense and baptizing someone to devote their life to Christ?


You think a parental reaction would be the same for:
Hey Johnny, how was school today?
Good, coach talked to us today about Mohammad and Islam.
-or-
Hey Johnny, how was school today?
Good, coach talked to us today about Mohammad and Islam. it was interesting and I really like coach so he asked for volunteers and I have now said my testimony to Islam in front of those with the faith so I am now a Muslim!

Finally, the reason it is possibly a constitutional violation IS because of the potential conflict of interest. Our forefathers wanted true freedom of religion and knew that members of government are influential. That is the point.
It's called separation of church and state. The courts have been specific and consistent about this.