Coach Lures Students Away for Baptism
Michelle Ammons is furious. Her 16 year old son, a student at Breckinridge County High School in Kentucky, was taken to a church on a school bus by the head football coach, and he was baptised, without her permission or knowledge. About 20 players were on this field trip and about half were baptised.
The school superintendent Janet Meeks was there at the service (it was her church) and did not object to school property being used or the field trip. Supposedly, it was ok because another coach paid for the gas.
According to USA Today:
Meeks said parents weren’t given permission slips to sign but knew the event would include a church service, if not specifically a baptism. She said eight or nine players came forward and were baptized.
“None of the players were rewarded for going and none were punished for not going,” Meeks said
Now why does that NOT make all this alright?
Both the ACLU and the Liberty Counsel have spoken on the issue but at present, are not involved in the case. Matt Staver, founder and general counsel for Liberty Counsel contributed:
[T]here was nothing wrong with trip as long as it was voluntary and no public funds were used. He compared it to a coach inviting players to attend a play or to go see a baseball game.
I guess the fact that the school bus belongs to the county and that the trip was school sponsored has been overlooked.
This is the type of egregious behavior that parents need to be mindful of. In the case of this Kentucky student, one parent was Baptist and one was Catholic. The parents had decided at age 18 the kid could make up his own mind. I guess that right got taken away. Mrs. Ammons concluded:
“Nobody should push their faith on anybody else,” said Ammons, whose son, Robert Coffey, said Coach Scott Mooney told him and other players that the Aug. 26 outing would include only a motivational speaker and a free steak dinner.
“He said it would bring the team together,” Robert, a sophomore, said in an interview….
Mrs. Ammons also was prepared to drop her complaint until she discovered that Superintendent Meeks had been in attendance when her son was baptized. It sounds like that is just what pushed her over the edge.