Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"I Knew Something Was Wrong..."

That's the word from the mother of one 16-year-old high school moron named Chad Farnan, who came home from his first day of honors history class taught by James Corbett and told his parents that Corbett had stated that there is no evidence that George Washington ever prayed in public.

"I knew something was wrong," Teresa Farnan said, "because we have a picture of George Washington praying in our home."

It boggles the mind -- calling Sarah Palin...

But wait, there's more: When crybaby Chad complained that Corbett was "attacking" his christian faith, his parents did the only sensible thing: Instead of directly confronting the teacher, they sent Chad to school with a tape recorder so he could record these horrible antiamerican antichristian so-called "ideas" that Corbett was spouting in his nefarious attempts to poison little Chad's mind.

And following this surreptitious -- and likely illegal -- recording, they took what can only be seen as the next sensible step: Instead of contacting the principal or the teacher, they filed a lawsuit, using something called the Advocates for Faith and Freedom, which I will admit I hadn't heard of before, but it appears to be "one of those" organizations, set up for the sole purpose of filing frivolous lawsuits on behalf of aggrieved believers in the One True Faith. Okay, not the sole purpose, since they appear to be pretty good at self-promotion and raising money.

It didn't take them but a few days to book appearances on the media outlets of the Usual Suspects -- Bill Orally, Slanthead Hannity, etc. -- in an attempt to inflame "the base" into sending them money for their "defense" -- never mind the fact that THEY filed the lawsuit and it was the poor history teacher who was the defendant.

Anyway, for what it's worth, the kind-of-reliable-but-not-really LA Times has most of the details, if you want to read them, but you can get a better picture of what happened if you read the article by the teacher himself, James Corbett, "In Defense of 'Jesus Glasses'":

The facts of my case are fairly simple. Chad Farnan, a 15-year-old self-described Christian fundamentalist student in my Advanced Placement European History class, sued me for a “pattern” of statements unconstitutionally hostile to religion. His claim was based on hours of illegal and surreptitious recordings.
. . .
I could criticize voodoo for animal cruelty in disemboweling a chicken, but not call the belief in entrail prophecy “superstition” or “nonsense.” By “Lemon” logic, the fundamentalist Muslim belief in jihad would be protected from criticism by a government actor as long as no crime was committed. How many government actors, including U.S. presidents, have criticized radical mullahs for their belief that the Koran demands death for infidels? I doubt any were in violation of the Constitution. Certainly, no legal scholar would argue that Christian beliefs have a special, and protected, place in constitutional law. So it may be upsetting to Christian fundamentalists for a teacher to say, for example, that a talking donkey is ridiculous, but should he be open to a lawsuit? I feel like I’m the donkey Chad and the Advocates are riding for fun and profit, but because I requested a summary judgment I—unlike biblical Balaam’s donkey—have no voice, “magic” or legal.
As we all know, the whole point of this lawsuit, and others like it, are not to "preserve the religious freedom" of poor put-upon students like whiny little Chad. No, they are intended to (1) Raise money for the Xian Right, and (2) Exercise a "chilling effect" on freedom of thought and its natural corollary, freedom of speech.

I wish that Corbett had not asked for that summary judgment. He should have gone full bore jury trial against these assholes. They need some "tough love" public humiliation. So they can be true "martyrs" for their faith...