It’s the era of conservative victories and we can all thank Donald Trump for that.
Trump nominated three conservative justices, all of whom were confirmed by the Senate and now occupy a seat on the bench of our nation’s highest court. This has allowed conservatives to finally experience what it means to be victorious in today’s radically liberal society.
Last Friday, the conservative-majority court decided to overturn Roe v. Wade in a controversial ruling that’s still causing mass hysteria across the entire world. And, again, on Monday, the Supreme Court delivered another major victory for freedom of speech in the United States.
The Supreme Court on Monday ruled in a 6-3 opinion in favor of a former high school football coach who was fired from his job for his postgame prayers on the field.
Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote for the majority, arguing the fear of offending the Constitution’s establishment clause does not require the government “to single out private religious speech for special disfavor. The Constitution and the best of our traditions counsel mutual respect and tolerance, not censorship and suppression, for religious and nonreligious views alike.”
“Joseph Kennedy lost his job as a high school football coach because he knelt at midfield after games to offer a quiet prayer of thanks,” Gorsuch added, according to court documents.
The legal fight between Kennedy, the former coach, and the Bremerton, Washington, school district began in 2015, and the case eventually reached the Supreme Court in 2019, when justices declined to take it and said the case was for lower courts to decide.
Kennedy, who coached football for eight years and previously served in the Marine Corps for nearly two decades said that he began having solitary postgame prayers in 2008 at the 50-yard line after each game as students gradually began joining him.
“A couple of the kids came up to me, and they said, ‘Hey, coach, what are you doing up there?’ And I said, ‘I’m just giving thanks to God for what you guys just did out there on the football field.’ They asked if they could join. ‘Of course,’ I said. ‘This is America, of course, you could join,'” Kennedy said.
When school officials learned about Kennedy’s prayers, they sought to compromise by offering him time to pray before and after the games, away from the stands where nobody could see him. Kennedy objected to the terms and continued praying after games on the 50-yard line until he was eventually placed on paid leave.
The school’s primary dispute with Kennedy’s actions stemmed from the fact that he served as an influential leader representing the school, potentially making some nonreligious students who may not wish to participate in his kneeling postgame prayers feel pressured to join him and other players on the team.
Following the decision, Kennedy said he couldn’t “stop smiling” and thanked his supporters, adding that the ruling proved “I’m not insane,” according to a Fox News interview.
Asked whether he would return to the field for coaching, Kennedy said, “Soon as they, the school district, says, ‘Hey, come back,’ I am there. Absolutely. First play.”
The school district said in a press release it was ready to move on from the “distraction of this seven-year legal battle” and continue its focus on providing students with an adequate education.
Karen Bevers, a spokeswoman for the school, said that “the District will comply with the Court’s ruling, even as we continue to ensure — as we must — that employees don’t coerce or pressure students to pray or take part in religious exercises contrary to the students’ and their families’ faith.”
The high court’s liberal bloc, Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Stephen Breyer, wrote a dissent.
Citing the same section of the Bill of Rights that defends free speech and the free exercise of religion, Sotomayor argued against the majority, noting the Constitution also protects students who have a right to an education free from government-exercised religion.
“Official-led prayer strikes at the core of our constitutional protections for the religious liberty of students and their parents,” Sotomayor wrote.
What the liberal justices missed, however, is the ‘unofficial’ nature of Kennedy’s post-game prayers, which were not a requirement to play on the team nor were they ‘official’ by any means.
This country was founded by religious outcasts searching desperately for religious freedom. The Supreme Court once again upheld that exact freedom.
Author: Monica Hedren