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Girl Suspended for Saying 'Bless You' After Classmate Sneezed

Not to be outdone by Summerville High School in South Carolina—where writing about shooting dinosaurs can get you arrested—Dyer County High School in Tennessee has suspended a teenage girl for saying "bless you" after a classmate sneezed.

That's according to the girl's account of events, reports CBS Charlotte:

Kendra Turner, a senior at Dyer County High School, said bless you to her classmate who sneezed and the teacher told her that the term was for church.
http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/20/teen-girl-suspended-for-sa...

Her pastor Rev. Becky Winegardner says they had just talked about how to stand up for their faith last week.

“There were several students that were talking about this particular faculty member there that was very demeaning to them in regards to their faith,” Winegardner said.

Students sent WMC a photo of the teacher’s white board that lists “bless you” and other expressions that are banned as part of class rules.

Turner’s parents say the school leaders claim the outburst was a classroom distraction – that Turner shouted “bless you” across the room.
WMC reports it was told only Dyer County School Superintendent Dwight Hedge could comment, and he apparently did not return phone messages, an email or a knock at his door.

http://wgntv.com/2014/08/20/girl-suspended-for-saying-bless-...

Some of Turner’s classmates supported her Tuesday by wearing hand made bless you shirts. She explained that she doesn’t want trouble for her teacher but that she’ll stand up for her faith no matter what.

“It’s alright to defend God and it’s our constitutional right because we have a freedom of religion and freedom of speech,” Turner told WMC.
http://charlotte.cbslocal.com/2014/08/20/high-school-student...



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another bump

When we all stand tall for who we are our chains will be broken!

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Doesn't pass the smell test

Something tells me there is more to this story. I doubt a teacher, and a school administration, would make a big deal over a non-religious salutation.

Is the student playing the victim card? The school says she was being disruptive by shouting 'bless you' across the room. Well, shouting, regardless of the content of the shout, could be the offending act and the student is conflating it with the 'bless you' sentiment.

scawarren's picture

Seems to me she got in

Seems to me she got in trouble after she defended her speech not because she supposedly shouted. Did you catch the part about the teacher's whiteboard with phrases she didn't won't to hear on it?

It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. – Mark Twain

Says the victim...er...student

What does the teacher and the school say?

Listen, I'm no friend of public prisons...schools...but I'm also not fond of people playing the victim card. This story just doesn't sound right.

If the girl really did get in trouble for 'bless you,' then the teacher and the principal are idiots. But the news story barely gives the school one sentence in rebuttal, the rest of the article is a retelling of the girl's side of things.

The teacher disrupted the classroom.

Had the teacher let it go, there would not have been any disruption. How do you allow a teacher to display a board with forbidden words? I'd say good god but that would get me kicked out too.

scawarren's picture

Exactly if my child was in

Exactly if my child was in this district I'd be raising hell. That "teacher" has no business being in a classroom imo.

It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. – Mark Twain

Public Schools are the 10th

Public Schools are the 10th Plank of the Communist Manifesto. This teacher is making Marx proud, sadly most do. Which should really be no surprise.

She should file a lawsuit for deprivation of her right to free

speech under "42 U.S. Code § 1983 - Civil action for deprivation of rights". She could easily win $20,000 or so; the school district could and/or the teacher herself be forced to pay her legal fees as well.

The purpose of separation of church and state was to prevent government from imposing an official state religion, not to prohibit people from mentioning God in their speech. She was not a government employee imposing religion on someone else; she was a private citizen politely exercising her right to free speech. It doesn't matter that it was in a classroom.

I am an atheist, and I find this action by the school offensive to freedom.

Here is a similar case where both the City and an alderman was forced under this federal law to pay for denial of free speech:

http://openjurist.org/12/f3d/799/casey-v-city-of-cabool-miss...

"Bend over and grab your ankles" should be etched in stone at the entrance to every government building and every government office.

bless you for posting this here

I posted your post on Twitter just now.

It reminded me one winter day when I was feeding pigeons a woman came up to me and said "God bless you".
Things like this stay with me forever.

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Legalize

Would you be talking about Father Jerzy Popieluszko?

I prefer a dangerous freedom over a peaceful slavery. Thomas Jefferson

I did it on this site many years ago

same as Warsaw Uprising when BOTH the east & the west created a slaughter for us Polish patriots.

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Ain't it strange how the

Ain't it strange how the world is now? You can curse all day long, you can call folks the filthiest names and it's all free speech. It's all applauded by society. If someone is even offended by such talk, they are told to grow up, or grow a thicker skin. But you can get in trouble for blessing someone.

prison planet

in 2000 even UN admitted that the number one business activity on EARTH we all live on is weapons trade.

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

Yeah that's absurd. I'm

Yeah that's absurd.

I'm agnostic and Ill even pray with someone. Not like it'll hurt anything.

The teacher's on a power trip more than anything tho

Eesh, I'm an atheist and I

Eesh, I'm an atheist and I say bless you all the time.

reminds me

growing up in Poland Catholic priest said to us children -
"an Atheist doing good can come to Heaven."

LL on Twitter: http://twitter.com/LibertyPoet
sometimes LL can suck & sometimes LL rocks!
http://www.dailypaul.com/203008/south-carolina-battle-of-cow...
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

This has become a common

This has become a common statement that people use whether they mean it or not.

To climb the mountain, you must believe you can.

Think about how odd this is:

Somehow the government's own rules don't apply in their schools.

Even more odd: parents willingly allow their children to attend these places where they are stripped of their rights.

Curious?

scawarren's picture

Bump... absolutely

Bump... absolutely ridiculous!

It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. – Mark Twain

scawarren's picture

:) and Bless You

This is absurd isn't it... yet another example of the government not following their own rules. The only thing I could add to this young lady's argument is that her rights are inalienable; not given but reinforced by our constitution.

It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled. – Mark Twain