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Posts for July 2018

Ninth Circuit Forbids School Board Invocations and Censors Private Citizens

in Blog, Cases, Media, Ninth Circuit, Press Releases 8 Comments


PRESS RELEASE

Tyler & Bursch, LLP
July 25, 2018 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Desare Ferraro at 951-600-2733

Ninth Circuit Forbids School Board Invocations and Censors Private Citizens

Chino, CA —Today, the Ninth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals ruled that the Chino Valley Unified School District board policy that allows invocations before the start of school board meetings is a violation of the Establishment Clause. The Fifth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals came to a different conclusion in 2017 in American Humanist Association v. McCarty.

The Ninth Circuit further affirms the District Court’s injunction that enjoins the CVUSD school board members “from conducting, permitting or otherwise endorsing school sponsored prayer in Board meetings.”

“This requires the Board to censor or otherwise remove individuals who attempt to say a prayer, or anything that might resemble a prayer, during the public comment period,” said Robert Tyler of Tyler & Burch, LLP and legal counsel for CVUSD. “Such an overbroad injunction is a clear violation of the right of private citizens to address their local representatives in public meetings and is dangerous to the First Amendment.” Footnote 20 of the Ninth Circuit’s opinion makes this point more clear.

In 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld ceremonial prayer at city council meetings in Town of Greece v Galloway. In that decision, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy noted the historical significance of such invocations. “Ceremonial prayer is but a recognition that, since this Nation was founded and until the present day, many Americans deem that their own existence must be understood by precepts far beyond the authority of government…,” Kennedy wrote.

The CVUSD school board will be meeting in the coming weeks to determine its next course of action.

A copy of the Ninth Circuit’s Opinion can be found here.

The Riverside County law firm of Tyler & Bursch, LLP, represents CVUSD, with the support of Advocates for Faith & Freedom, a nonprofit legal organization.

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To learn more about Advocates for Faith & Freedom, visit www.faith-freedom.com or Tyler & Bursch, LLP, visit www.tylerbursch.com

Advocates for Faith & Freedom is a nonprofit public interest law firm dedicated to protecting religious liberty in the courts. The firm, in association with Tyler & Bursch LLP, has represented clients across the country on matters governing land use and religious liberty in the public square.

“A Judge’s Judge”

That’s how President Trump described Judge Brett Kavanaugh when he proudly announced his nomination for the United States Supreme Court.

Within minutes, realizing this big win for constitutional conservatives, Democrats ran to their stages and microphones, sounding the alarm to their pro-abortion base that this will be the fight of their lifetimes and they

vowed to oppose Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination with everything they have.

Abortion activists like Naral Pro-Choice America President Ilyse Hogue, viciously bellowed her opposition to this well-known and respected jurist saying Judge Kavanaugh would use the court “as a tool to eradicate women’s right” to make the most fundamental decisions about their bodies.

In his remarks during his nomination of Judge Kavanaugh, President Trump noted, “What matters is not a judge’s political views but whether they can set aside those views to do what the law and the Constitution require. I am pleased to say that I have found, without doubt, such a person.”

At a time when so many judges either do not understand or do not respect the limit of the court, Judge Kavanaugh’s acceptance speech brought hope to all Americans who respect our Constitution. He said, “A judge must be independent and must interpret the law, not make the law,” Kavanaugh said. “A judge must interpret statutes as written. And a judge must interpret the Constitution as written, informed by history and tradition and precedent.”

Advocates for Faith & Freedom’s current Religious Land Use case, Calvary Chapel Bible Fellowship v. County of Riverside, is a clear case of government overreach and the outcome will rely on Constitutional jurisprudence.  In California’s 9th Circuit, the country’s most overturned court in the nation, that might be unlikely. With Judge Kavanaugh confirmed, it will be a comfort to know that the U.S. Supreme Court’s majority will seek to rule in accordance with the Constitution, not their personal ideology.

We encourage every Christian to call your two U.S. Senators and ask for a swift confirmation for Judge Kavanaugh.