A religious liberty attorney has some legal advice for communities that are besieged by a notorious anti-religious group: Ignore their hollow threats.
A public-school district in Missouri received a threatening letter from the Freedom from Religion Foundation after the atheist group learned football coaches are involved in post-game prayers.
In the letter, FFRF demands that the Cameron School District “commence an investigation” over head coach Jeff Wallace and assistant coach David Stucky for holding post-game prayers at the 50-yard line. The group also requests that the school district then take “immediate action” to stop them, then inform an FFRF attorney of the school district’s actions.
Cameron is a small community of 10,000 residents located in western Missouri, just east of St. Joseph.
First Liberty Institute attorney Jeremy Dys calls the letter harassment from a group that tries to “gin up a controversy" where none exists.
"We ought to allow people in this country to simply exercise their faith,” he says, “and assume good motives in their doing so."
Superintendent Dr. Matt Robinson, who told Fox News the school district does not endorse religion, also said the school district has never received a complaint from anyone in the community.
Dys has legal advice for schools in such a situation: Ignore the letter if a plaintiff is not identified, which indicates an actual lawsuit is under way.
FFRF can obviously file a lawsuit if it can find a plaintiff to represent but more often that never happens. The mere threat of a lawsuit often makes public school boards and city councils cave before legal groups such as First Liberty can offer free legal advice over important court rulings and First Amendment rights.
“Don't just simply take a loud complaint from an organization who decries anything having to do with religion in public,” Dys advises