Posts Tagged ‘john freshwater’

John Freshwater roundup

June 23, 2008

Pharyngula links today to a very able summary of all the John Freshwater business.  John Freshwater, in case you don’t recall, is the lovable middle school science teacher who posts the Ten Commandments in his classroom, teaches creationism, and, at least once, burned a cross into a student’s forearm. 

Read the summary, if only for one thing: you get to see a picture of the cross-shaped burn mark.  I had envisioned a little thing, but this is the whole length of the students’ forearm!  You’ll also learn of a shrill religious right organization that is largely responsible for the movement to support Mr. Freshwater.

In any case, Mr. Freshwater is scheduled to be fired on July 7, unless he asks for a hearing.  Great news, although by all accounts it was eleven years too late.

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We’ll see him in court

June 18, 2008

Word to Pharyngula for running this story: John Freshwater, the lovable Ohio high school science teacher who burns crosses into his students’ arms and generally supports evangelism in the public classroom, is being taken to court for violation of the Establishment Clause.

Freshwater is apparently guilty of far more transgressions than a simple cruciform branding. He keeps Bibles in the classroom, not for his own use, he openly teaches his religious beliefs to students, he taught intelligent design as early as 2003, he distributed Bibles to students, including extras so give to other students who were not present, and on and on. Perhaps most galling, a guest speaking at his invitation imparted this little gem to the students: “they should disobey the law to further their own religion, even if it means going to jail.”

These are the actions of an evangelist, not a science teacher. If even half the above allegations are true, this is an open and shut case. Mr. Freshwater violated the Constitution left and right, and by all appearances is proud of it. It is a sad testament to the condition of some school districts that he wasn’t fired years ago.