Friday, December 23, 2005

California Lutheran School Facing Expulsion Lawsuit

(Link) Although the two grrls weren't smooching publicly, a California high school booted them out because there is still a bond of intimacy ... characteristic of a lesbian [relationship]. ... Such a relationship is unchristian." Atheists and Jewish students are still welcome to attend, though.

1 comment:

LNewsEditor said...

JIC Post:
By Elaine Spencer
Christian Post

A private Lutheran high school is being sued by two students who say they were unfairly discriminated against when their principal expelled them for allegedly being lesbians.

The students and their parents sued the California Lutheran High School Association, which oversees the private high school in Wildomar, Calif., last Thursday with claims of discrimination, invasion of privacy and unfair business practices, according to The Californian. The lawsuit calls on the courts to prevent the school from expelling other students on the perception of their sexual orientation and seeks punitive damages in excess of $25,000.

According to the lawsuit, the situation unfolded in the beginning of the school year when faculty suspected that the two students may be homosexual. On Sept. 7, the students were called into a meeting with the principal, the Rev. Greg Bork, who allegedly “interrogated” the students in a closed room and “coerced” one of the students to admit that she “‘loves’ the other,” the lawsuit stated.

By Sept. 15, Bork wrote to the students’ parents that “while there is no open physical contact between the two girls, there is still a bond of intimacy ... characteristic of a lesbian [relationship]. ... Such a relationship is unchristian. To allow the girls to attend [Cal Lutheran] ... would send a message to students and parents that we either condone this situation and/or will not do anything about it. That message would not reflect our beliefs and principles."

The lawsuit further states that the parents’ attempts to reverse the decision to expel their daughters were denied in October by the school’s board of directors.

According to a spokesman for state Attorney General Bill Lockyer, the lawsuit is groundbreaking in its potential implications.

"This is an unsettled area of the law," said Nathan Barankin, communications director for the attorney general. "The public policy issues are religious freedom versus the right not to be discriminated against."

Christopher Hayes, the students’ attorney, said he believed the law is on his clients’ side.

"We believe that California law is clear. The California Unruh Civil Rights Act ... prohibits businesses from discriminating against people for various reasons,” Hayes said to The Californian on Tuesday.

Hayes said he believes that law applies to private schools because “it is a fee-taking school.”

“This is not a church,” he added. “They accept non-Christians and … they accept Jews, who as a fundamental doctrine of their religion do not accept Jesus Christ. What can be more antithetical to Christianity than Judaism? California law says you cannot pick and choose who you discriminate against."

However, Tom Scott, vice president of operations for the Association of Christian Schools International, which represents some 4,000 religious schools nationwide, said such business standards do not apply to private, religious schools. Cal Lutheran is not associated with the ACSI.

“Private schools don't operate under public schools' standards," Scott said, adding that private, religious schools have the right to decide who attends.

In the case of Cal Lutheran, Scott said it is similar to public schools expelling students for drug use or violence. Both public and private schools have the right to expel a student if they have a cause to believe they are engaging in a destructive lifestyle, he said, according to The Californian.