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Utah coaches teaching mormonism to players

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by Buffnik, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    [case description] Americans United for Separation of Church and State sent a letter to university Pres. David Pershing Monday requesting that graduate assistant and former NFL player Sione Pouha and Utah safeties coach Morgan Scalley stop teaching an LDS Institute class meant for players on the football team.

    “The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution bars public-university employees from teaching religious classes to university students,” the letter states. “The Establishment Clause prohibits governmental bodies from taking any action that communicates ‘endorsement of religion.’”


    [author note] Just to make clear, there are two problems here: You have university employees teaching what amounts to a Sunday School class (as opposed to, say, a secular class on the history of Mormonism)… and you have football coaches teaching a class that football players are expected to take (even if it’s “voluntary” in name).

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friend...are-teaching-a-class-in-mormonism-to-players/
     
  2. J.R. Ewing

    J.R. Ewing Club Member Club Member

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    Wow, I thought UU was more secular than that.
     
  3. NWD Buff

    NWD Buff Club Sandwich Club Member

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    My wife's father is a BYU alum (and a Mormon). He told me that the UU student body is just over 50% LDS. Can't find much of a source online for more specific info.
     
  4. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    LDS church has a lot of power in Utah but this is not okay in a publicly funded school.

    Looks even worse if it is as described a class for athletes to get credit outside normal course catalog or if athletes are coerced into taking it.
     
  5. darth-horax

    darth-horax Well-Known Member

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    As a Mormon, this is a misunderstanding.
    The class is 100% voluntary and nobody HAS to attend. This class is meant for LDS students who choose to attend
    because they can't attend other Institute classes that are obviously offered at times they cannot make it.

    This is and should not be a problem becuase it is:
    1) not mandatory for anybody
    2) has nothing to do with the school becuase the class is sponsored by the Church, not the school
    3) it's no different than going to a Sunday School class at your local church at any other day of the week
     
  6. darth-horax

    darth-horax Well-Known Member

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    Also, nearly EVERY college campus has LDS Institute classes going on at least once/week.
    Even CU Boulder has it, so it's nothing new.
     
  7. Liver

    Liver modded mod Club Member Junta Member

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    if it is separate from the school, not funded or sponsored by the school, and not required by the coaches, then it isn't different than Mac's off-hours evangelism. if, it is more than that, then it is unconstitutional.
     
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  8. NWD Buff

    NWD Buff Club Sandwich Club Member

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    Whether the class is voluntary or not is immaterial. The class is taught by university employees, and the students are members of an organization who are subject to coercion with regards to taking the class. Offseason workouts are often "voluntary", but players who want to protect their spot on a depth chart would probably argue that point.

    CU has had simlar issues with this. (As have many state universities. It really has little to do with LDS, and more with seperation of church and state.) McCartney and Ricardo Patton both received complaints about leading prayer sessions that were "voluntary", but that players were not going to miss for fear of falling out of favor. In her book, Kate Fagan details the pressure she received to attend FCA sessions from both fellow players and university employees.
     
  9. pcbuff

    pcbuff Club Member Club Member

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    In the local press when this went down a few weeks ago the spin was that they were doing these classes at the request of some of the Poly's that wanted something to counter moms claims of what they were missing from the BYU experience.
     
  10. Buffs35

    Buffs35 Well-Known Member

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    Wow, and we can't even teach our OL to block.
     
  11. Uncle Ken

    Uncle Ken Orr no morr Club Member

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    I used to have a subordinate at work that had voluntary sex with me once a year, right before evaluations.
     
  12. SpacemanSpiff

    SpacemanSpiff Club Member Club Member

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    Burrito tells the same story. Strange that neither of you can agree on who was the boss.
     
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  13. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    This shouldn't be here.

    Her son has been banned and isn't around to defend her.
     
    dply and aik like this.
  14. HotRack

    HotRack Rez BubbleHead Club Member

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    When I lived in Idaho, and still true today, each public high school has an LDS Seminary right across the street. The "of age" LDS kids would sign up for "Seminary" (Being Lutheran, LDS Seminary was akin to confirmation classes I took every Wednesday evening at church for 2 years) and would across the street each day for their 1 hour class. Here's the kicker - they also received credit for it.
    The above example is much more in violation of church and state than the UU one is, so while it gets even one in an uproar, it will go nowhere.
     
  15. NWD Buff

    NWD Buff Club Sandwich Club Member

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    My high school in Colorado Springs had a Mormon ward across the street. (I think it was a ward. A stake? - Whatever, it was a building that said Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in front of it, and all of my Mormon friends went there every day.)
     
  16. Liver

    Liver modded mod Club Member Junta Member

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    you are close, but not exactly right. i suspect the reason the suit was filed is because they feel like they can prove coercive behavior that would take away the "voluntary" piece of it. this is different than voluntary workouts. it is fine for coaches to have consequences for not attending workouts. if the plaintiffs can prove they were somehow forced to attend the prayer sessions, then there is an issue. otherwise, the fact that they are university employees teaching religion outside their jobs doesn't de facto render the act unconstitutional. there are even cases (altho, admittedly, i haven't looked at them in ages) that set forth that the use of public facilities (such as class rooms) is also not an issue provided that the school makes the facilities available to other secular groups on an equal basis.

    you have to prove favoritism, coercion, that sort of thing.

    there is a balancing act between the establishment clause (which the anti-religion forces use as their club) and the free exercise clause (which is what religious people use as their shield).

    hard to say how this one will shake out without more details, but presuming that the coaches did something wrong is off-base.
     
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  17. FlatironsBuff

    FlatironsBuff Club Member Club Member

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    He sounds like a go-getter!
     
  18. Burrito Palazzo

    Burrito Palazzo huff my smug Club Member

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    That's not true!


    Evals happen twice a year.
     
  19. CVBuff

    CVBuff Club Member Club Member

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    The U of U responded to the letter (not a lawsuit) by the group, as reported by Salt Lake Trib:

    The U. Office of General Counsel responded late Tuesday that it's not a violation of the First Amendment's Establishment Clause "for a group of LDS students and coaches to voluntarily participate in a religious instruction activity."

    "At the present time, we have no reason to believe this was an activity sponsored by the university or that there was any coercion of the students to participate. These individuals have the constitutional right to freely exercise their religion, and it would be illegal for the University to interfere with that activity."
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2015
  20. CVBuff

    CVBuff Club Member Club Member

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    Whit also responded:

    Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham said after Tuesday's practice that Pouha is "absolutely not" the Institute class instructor, nor are any of his assistants. Scalley and Pouha participate on a volunteer basis, Whittingham clarified later Tuesday evening.

    The Church has a paid instructor who teaches a class specifically for any football players who want to attend. These two coaches attend and participate in the class. I wouldn't be surprised if the instructor at the CU LDS institute would do the same for any athletes interested.
     
  21. HotRack

    HotRack Rez BubbleHead Club Member

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    Told y'all this wouldn't go anywhere.
     
  22. SpacemanSpiff

    SpacemanSpiff Club Member Club Member

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    Which one of you gets a 2.0 in Judgement?
     
  23. zbuff

    zbuff Club Member Club Member

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    The ACLU's constitutional interpretation seems to allow this.
    While the schools cannot teach religion
    they can have a club on campus
     
  24. The Monk

    The Monk Club Member Club Member

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    Utah Utes more like American Taliban.
     
  25. PAHIBuff

    PAHIBuff Club Member Club Member

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    While I'm not a Mormon, I've always been put off by blatant anti-Mormonism. We've known a few LDS folks here and there through working/living in the West, and there's no problem. The key to the story is the word "voluntary".
     

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