MISSION VIEJO (CBS) — A federal appeals court ruled on Friday that a Southland teacher who ridiculed creationism did not violate a student’s First Amendment rights and thus is not subject to any legal action.

The ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco overturned a lower court ruling from earlier this year.

That ruling said a Mission Viejo teacher’s dismissal of Biblical creationism as “religious, superstitious nonsense” violated a ban of governmental hostility toward religion.

However, the appellate court would not rule on the constitutionality of the comments in particular, according to the Associated Press.

The court ruled Capistrano Valley High School teacher James Corbett is protected from such lawsuits because the instructor had a reasonable belief such comments were acceptable in an advanced placement European history class.

Until the late 19th century, creationism was taught in U.S. classrooms under the presupposition that the Bible is inerrant and is to be interpreted literally except where the context denotes otherwise — a stance that radically changed when widespread acceptance of the evolutionary theory took hold of public schools in the 1860s.

Comments (5)
  1. Arod says:

    Of course they did…..I’m also sure that had the teacher made a statement in favor of creation the court would have went the other way but ya know, that’s ok, God will decide how he want’s to handle people like this teacher and those who sit on the courts. Not my problem. As for me when my kids came home with these kind of problems I simply explained to them (and still do) That being a teacher or a judge doesn’t mean much if they a closed minded and not very intelligent. I also tried to explain the difference between and educated person and an intelligent person…there is a big difference. I let them know while in school they had to play by the schools rules but to use their own minds about what they knew to be true and not to be upset about a misguided teacher who is so close minded that they would make the kind of remarks that this teacher did.
    It’s my duty as a parent to teach my children the truth and guide them away from people like this a I have no real problem doing so.

    1. Phil says:

      It’s funny, you are neither educated or intelligent. Shame on you for telling your kids fairy tails as if they were truth.

  2. William says:

    Although it is bad form for a teacher to ridicule students, he is correct in asserting that creationism does not agree with generally accepted scientific theories regarding the origins of the earth. People believed that the earth was flat for thousands of years, but all that believing, however sincere, did not make it so except in their imaginations. Science is based on verifiable truths not belief.

    1. lala63 says:

      Indeed. Well said William.

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