File this under . . .
. . . a victory for the separation of church and state:
EAST BRUNSWICK, N.J. -- A veteran central New Jersey high school football coach has resigned after being told by school officials he could no longer lead his team in pregame prayer.He's not being punished for being religious; he simple cannot, as a government employee encourage, discourage, or endorse any religion or religion in general. This sums it up perfectly:
There's nothing illegal about praying in school (or anywhere you would like for that matter). The government cannot stop you from practicing your religion. You simply cannot encourage others to do it if you're on the clock with the government. What's so hard to understand about that?
A spokeswoman for the district, Trish LaDuca, said students have the right to pray on school property during school events, but the prayer must be initiated by the students; otherwise it violates the law.
"A representative of the school district cannot constitutionally initiate prayer, encourage it or lead it," LaDuca told the Home News Tribune of East Brunswick. Representatives of the school cannot participate in the student-initiated prayer."