High school cheerleaders in Kountze, Texas, are now allowed to paint Bible verses on pre-game run-through football banners, something they had been banned from doing since 2012 when Freedom From Religion Foundation filed a complaint. The Texas state Court of Appeals for the 9th District ruled recently that “the cheerleaders’ speech on the pre-game run-through banners cannot be characterized as government speech.” Since these verses were, instead, characterized as private speech, this form of speech is protected by the First Amendment.
“No school district should be able to censor, ban, or claim ownership of the private religious speech of its students,” said First Liberty Institute General Counsel Hiram Sasser, who represented the cheerleaders. This court case win is a great victory not just for students in Kountze but for the entire Lone Star State as well.
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