FFRF Gets Bible Verse Removed from School Gym

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has successfully forced a public high school in Parkersburg, West Virginia to remove the Bible verse “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” from a gymnasium wall. And of course, some people are upset about that.

Officials with Wood County Schools say a Bible verse that is in the school’s gym is being painted over.

The verse is Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. The same verse is on the back of Parkersburg South’s wrestling shirts.

Recently the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter to school officials, complaining about the Bible verse being used as the wrestling team’s motto.

But, but, but…religious freedom!

Attorney Bill Merriman says he is representing one of Parkersburg South’s wrestlers and his parents.

Merriman says the family feels their right to freedom of expression is being taken away from them.

Uh, why? They’re still free to express their views all they want, they just can’t make it an official motto for a public school sports team and they can’t paint it on the building. This really isn’t that difficult a call, folks.

12 comments on this post.
  1. Modusoperandi:

    This explains everything. No wonder their team always won. Jesus grants super-strength!

  2. lofgren:

    They should just replace “Jesus” with “Gamma rays.”

  3. Gregory in Seattle:

    If the Talibangelicals are not allowed to force their beliefs on everyone else, then THEY are the ones being oppressed. Duh.

  4. Doug Little:

    Maybe they can go on a hunger strike?

  5. Sastra:

    But democracy means “majority rules,” right?

    Ok then … if God made everything then He made the public school. Why can’t we just acknowledge that fact which everybody knows?

  6. John Pieret:

    If Bill Merriman is doing anything but telling them to forget any lawsuit over this, he is committing malpractice.

  7. Kevin Kehres:

    @7: Ah, but think of all of those lovely billable hours.

  8. John Pieret:

    Kevin Kehres @ 7:

    But if that is the only reason any lawyer actually starts an action, he or she is arguably committing fraud.

  9. fifthdentist:

    @ Modus,
    Over an entire night of wrestling Jesus’ dad was unable to throw Abraham. Yahweh apparently sucks at wrestling.

  10. somnus:

    “Merriman says the family feels their right to freedom of expression is being taken away from them.”

    A sign in the school, and shirts distributed by the school, is not *their* religious expression. *Their* religious expression would be them wearing their own personal shirts or putting up their own personal sign that express their religious beliefs.

    This is the school administration making an illegal expression of religious belief that these parents happen to agree with. Which is not the same thing at all.

  11. lordshipmayhem:

    They get strength from their Jesus in a gymnasium wall? Who bricked the gardener in there?

    Shades of “A Cask of Amontillado”!

  12. caseloweraz:

    Uh oh. That gymnasium is going to collapse any day now, since its “structural integrity” has been compromised.

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