Friday, September 07, 2007

Appeals Court Rules Against High School Christian Club

From "Appeals Court Rules Against High School Christian Club" from staff reports at posted 8/29/07

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled against a Christian club that is seeking to start up at a Seattle high school.

Truth Bible Club has been trying to gain recognition since 2001, but has been blocked because of its Christian code of conduct.

Officials at Kentridge High School have called the club discriminatory because its name excludes other religions, and its bylaws require voting members to sign a statement espousing the Bible.

Robert Tyler, of Advocates for Faith and Freedom, said the school's argument doesn't hold up.

“It is discriminatory, but there’s nothing wrong with discrimination in the right context,” he told Family News in Focus. “For example you have the boys basketball team and the girls basketball team.”

Nate Kellum, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), pointed out the school's double standard: other clubs are granted the freedom to associate with whomever they please — including the school's Gay Straight Alliance.

“It’s really incredible that these groups are allowed to identify themselves according to membership," he said, "but Truth is forced to compromise who they are — they are forced to compromise their message.”

Kellum added that ADF is prepared to take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court if that’s what it takes for Truth Bible Club to gain recognition.