Atheists Want to Sue Clemson University – But They Have One Little Problem

Disgruntled atheists have another Christian football coach in their sights.

Last month BCN blogged about Joe Kennedy of Bremerton High School in Washington state. He prayed on the football field, and some players and other Christians joined him. The school district suspended the coach after he defied an order to stop. Coach Kennedy subsequently filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for religious discrimination.

The Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) sent a letter of support to the school district, urging them to stand by the decision to discriminate against the coach on the basis of religion.

The same group wants to file suit against Clemson University in South Carolina over another football coach. According to Breitbart, the FFRC doesn’t like Dabo Swinney’s coaching style, which reflects his Christian faith. But there’s a hold-up (emphases added):

The only problem is the group can’t find a current or former player willing to step up as a plaintiff.

“We filed a complaint [against Clemson] in 2014. At this point we don’t think the university has taken appropriate corrective action,” FFRF staff attorney Patrick Elliott tells Breitbart News.

He adds, “We still have concerns about how that program is being conducted. The university needs to appropriately monitor religious activity in the program.”

When asked specifically what those concerns are, Elliott rattled off a list.

“They need to stop doing church day. They need to cease having coaches in team prayer. And don’t know the status of their chaplaincy.”

Anti-Christian atheists argue that separation between church and state is a constitutional principle, but nothing in the Establishment or Free Exercise Clauses indicates any such concept. Freedom of religion is there, however, and it’s the first right listed.

Breitbart’s reporter asked FFRF lawyer Patrick Elliott specifically how Clemson’s football program violated the Establishment Clause. When Elliot learned the news source’s name, he said, “That makes a lot of sense,” and hung up.

Photo credit: Marty Stone (Creative Commons) – Some Rights Reserved 

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  1. Why does it bother atheists so much when people pray to an entity they don’t believe in?