At Harding High School in Marion, Ohio, there used to be a plaque of the Ten Commandments hanging in the hallway. It was there for nearly 60 years, a gift from the Class of 1956.
Last summer, knowing that it would eventually be subject to a legal challenge, district officials took it down. And rightfully so — there was no reason a public school should be encouraging students not to worship false idols or reminding them to have no other gods but the Christian one.
A few months ago, a freshman (who clearly hasn’t taken a government class yet) began fighting to put it back up:
Freshman Anthony Miller is protesting the decision this week: He is attending classes, but not actively participating or doing his homework.
“I don’t care about my grades right now,” he said.
“I told the principal, until there is an agreement reached, I will not participate in any Harding-related activities, any Marion City Schools-related activities. Sports, choir, classes, whatever. I won’t even wear my Harding Marching Band shirt.”
How’s that for a protest? I don’t understand why the Ten Commandments plaque was taken down… so I’m going to continue not getting educated.
Yep, that’ll solve the problem.
I don’t mean to pick on a high school freshman, especially when his rationale isn’t much different from conservative Christian adults who are equally ignorant on this matter. The school, understanding that he meant well, decided not to punish him, but they said they would talk to him and discuss where their plaque could go.
Finally, there’s some resolution on this issue.
The school board voted unanimously this week to donate the plaque to the Marion County Historical Society for an “indefinite” amount of time:
Board president Steve Williams said he has the Ten Commandments hanging in his home. However, as an elected official, he said he needed to be impartial and to be a good financial steward.
Board member Ted McKinniss said every legal expert has told the school board that “our situation in Marion could not pass Constitutional scrutiny.” He said the decision to loan the plaque “gives future boards of education the opportunity to bring it back to our halls should circumstances change.”
After the meeting, freshman Anthony Miller said he was disappointed, but wasn’t really surprised.
No word yet on how Miller’s GPA is doing.
This was the right decision and it’s a relief that the board recognized right from wrong. The district has no business promoting Christianity to students, even if the plaque was a gift. Adults may whine about it and Miller may throw a temper tantrum, but that’s no reason to waste taxpayer money on what will inevitably be a losing lawsuit.
(Image via Shutterstock. Thanks to Brian for the link. Large portions of this article were posted earlier)