September 15, 2006

Court Permits Religious Recruitment in Oregon Public Schools

From the Corvallis Gazette-Times, the Oregon Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Boy Scouts in a case involving religion in the schools. The case was brought by the atheist parent of a first-grader who argued that the school's requirement for their son to attend Boy Scout recruiting held during school hours violated the separation clause. Interesting case because the Scouts not only endorse belief in supernatural beings but also discriminate against nonbelievers and homosexuals.

The court ruled that providing information (even when attendance is mandatory) is not discrimination under Oregon law. You see, the court reasoned that there was no discrimination during the recruiting phase.

"“It is in the later enrollment in the organization that the Boy Scouts differentiate among those who do not profess a belief in the deity and those who do."’ I can't help thinking that this logic could be applied to permit neo-Nazi recruiting. Based on a footnote cited in the opinion, it appears that this would be perfectly acceptable.

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