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High school students are protesting the Pledge of Allegiance, and now schools are getting sued

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Two Texas high schools are being sued by students who claim they've been punished for protesting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Justin Merriman/Getty Images)

Two Texas high schools have found themselves mired in protest controversies because they’ve been sued by students who claim they were punished for sitting during the Pledge of Allegiance.

Klein Oak High School

A student identified as “M.O.” in court filings has been sitting during the pledge since 2014, but she alleges that in September 2017 her teacher compared people who don’t stand for the pledge to Communists and those who condone pedophilia.

M.O. claims she was disciplined by the school and bullied by classmates.

The lawsuit is being funded by American Atheists, a nonprofit that advocates for the separation of church and state.

From an American Atheists statement:

“School officials at Klein Oak High School have violated the First Amendment rights of M.O. and her mother. For years, they were complicit in a bullying and harassment campaign of a student who did nothing more than peacefully exercise those rights.”

M.O. said she sits for the pledge because it’s her constitutional right, and also because “we live in a country where there isn’t justice and freedom for all, so I’m not going to stand for a pledge that says there is when there really isn’t.”

Cypress-Fairbanks ISD

India Landry and her mother are suing Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District. Landry regularly protested during the pledge, but one day she happened to be in the principal’s office when she did it.

Landry claims she was told to get a ride home with her mother within five minutes or police would escort her out of the school, and that the secretary told her “This is not the NFL.”

Landry protests because she doesn’t think “the flag is what it says it’s for, for liberty and justice and all that. It’s obviously not what’s going on in America today.”

Precedent

It's worth noting that the Supreme Court ruled in 1943 that students could not be forced to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance in West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette.

(H/T Fox News)

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