Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Settlement reached in Freshwater case!

The second to last part of the Freshwater saga is at an end. John Freshwater is not allowed to brand students! Now if only the judge presiding over the last issue, his administrative hearing on being fired, would issue his ruling we can all start to forget John Freshwater!

If you want a refresher, The Panda's Thumb's Richard Hoppe provided an amazing amount of coverage! Bottom line is John Freshwater was fired for a number of things including assault on students by burning crosses in their arms, lying to investigators, and failing to follow school board policies-- to name a few. Several suits followed, a lot of apparently foolish activity by Freshwater and his attorney, R. Kelly Hamilton, and we are nearing the end of the road. Maybe Mt Vernon, OH can also set this behind them -- providing Freshwater is not returning to the classroom.

Here is my issue. John Freshwater might not be burning crosses in any arms, which is a good thing, but is it enough? Does this man who would even think to do such a thing belong in the classroom? He has received a lot of positive attention from many Creationists who keep trying to cast this in a 'religious freedom' light. But the reality is not about religious or even academic freedom. John Freshwater is supposed to be teaching science. Instead of that he assaulted his charges, taught Creationist/intelligent Design against school policy, and then lied about it to investigators. What kind of lesson will this be telling our students if he is allowed to return to the classroom? Plus, since he has settled the other lawsuits most certainly not in his favor, what kind of message will this send to Freshwater if he is allowed back int he classroom? Sure, he might not be burning crosses, but teachers in Mt. Vernon High School will still have to be re-teaching the material supposedly covered by John Freshwater because he wasn't held responsible to failing to teach it.

That is my $.02. He had his chance and he allowed his religious convictions to get in the way of him doing his job. Would you fire a butcher who refused to cut meat for religious reasons? Would you fire an employee who refused to follow the direction of a female supervisor for religious reasons? Would you fire a Pharmacist who refused to give out Birth Control pills for religious reasons? I certainly hope so. And that is why John Freshwater deserves to lose his job. It's not that he couldn't do it, but that he refused to do it and nothing I have read on this hearing has given me any hope that he would suddenly start doing it.

I wonder if the Discovery Institute will have anything to say. So far he's about the only Intelligent Design proponent they haven't offered support. I might have to go back and double check that, but I cannot recall anything supporting Freshwater from luskin, Klinghoffer, or that bunch. If I am wrong, please pass me a link. It might be worth a follow-up post once the final hearing decision is done. Word is that might come down by the end of the year!


  1. AFAIK the Discovery Institute troops haven't made a single peep about Freshwater.

  2. Thanks Richard. I didn't think so and went back through my links and couldn't find any. I'm not really surprised because anything that links Creationism to Intelligent Design tends to cause the DI to run and hide. Look at all their 'assistance' to Louisiana, particularly Livingston Parish.