Catholic High School Fights for First Amendment Rights

The Lyceum, a Catholic classical high school in South Euclid, Ohio, is fighting for its First Amendment rights in a lawsuit challenging a sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) non-discrimination ordinance passed by the South Euclid City Council in 2018 that does not include an exemption for religious or moral convictions.

The ordinance would severely impinge on the school’s faith-based beliefs about sexuality and marriage by potentially forcing the school to hire or enroll those who disagree with the school’s teachings. The school said it would rather close its doors than give in to this governmental meddling.

Administrators at The Lyceum attended several city council meetings trying to understand how the SOGI ordinance might affect the school but got no answers, so Alliance Defending Freedom filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of the school against the city challenging the constitutionality of the ordinance.

On its website, ADF notes, “Tolerance is a two-way street. Government officials are constitutionally bound to protect these freedoms even if their own personal beliefs about marriage and sexuality are different.”

Aaron Baer, president of Citizens for Community Values (CCV), a sister organization to FACT, said, “South Euclid passed one of the most offensive and egregious sexual orientation gender identity laws that I have ever seen, and Christian ministries across the country should take note of what these laws would mean to them.”

Ohio’s state legislature is currently considering state-level SOGI legislation called the Ohio Fairness Act.

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