The same would be true if the student chose to tell the assembled students that they would not go to hell, that there is no hell and that those who promote belief in hell are liars. What if a Wican student chose to tell the assembled students that the only true God is Nature, or a member of a radical religious sect advocated assassination in order to preserve God’s will? According to this bill, those students would be free, in a forum supported by the school, to do so. Any or all of these scenarios would lead to lawsuits.
The consequence of the bill will be to create havoc and promote discord in the public schools. That’s already happening in Texas, where the bill has been law for several months. Denton, Texas Independent School District, responding to the law, has decreed that no students may ever speak in assembly, to graduation, to the crowd at an athletic event or in other group function. As reported in The Denton Record Chronicle Sept. 1, the superintendent there said if no students are ever allowed to speak, then there will be no discrimination and no basis for lawsuits. Another school superintendent in Texas said, “… we’re just trying to have school, and I think this is a complicating factor” as reported by Americans United for Separation of Church and State, an organization that has spoken out against the bill.
What administrators fear as the law is implemented is a barrage of lawsuits. School administrators in Texas are frightened. They fear lawsuits from students who feel that the school is forcing them to endure religious activity they do not agree with nor want to have imposed on them. They also fear lawsuits from students who claim they have not been properly allowed the forum the law requires. They’ll be damned (or sued) if they do, damned (or sued) if they don’t. Oklahoma will experience the same.