An editorial today in the Los Angeles Times weighs in on the case of Capistrano Valley High School history teacher James Corbett, who was recently ruled to have violated the establishment clause of the Constitution by calling creationism "religious, superstitious nonsense." The Weekly's been covering the saga, most recently here.
The Times editorial dances around the issue of whether Corbett actually did anything wrong. His comments "crossed the line," says the Times, but the single sentence that the judge took issue with "should deserve the protection of the 1st Amendment." The editorial's main beef is that this whole thing went to court at all: "A proliferation of lawsuits like [student Chad] Farnan's could discourage teachers more tactful than Corbett from engaging their students in lively discussion."
But after all equivocation comes a decisive zinger:
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It would have been better if such a solution could have been negotiated without a trial. Ideally, students and parents with complaints against a teacher would take their grievances to the principal's office rather than a court. In other words, they should take off their lawyer glasses.