Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Michigan's AntiBullying Law

Michigan has passed a law designed to protect students from being bullied. Which is good. However, it has a provision allowing verbal bullying if the bullying is based on “a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction.”

So a student can be bullied for being gay, a different religion, or anything really and the school can't stop it if the bully says his opinions are based on a religious belief or moral conviction.

Everyone is entitled to their opinions, that's not up for discussion. And under the First Amendment, everyone (arguably) has the right to exercise their religion. However, religious belief should not be used to harm another person. And that is what this law allows.

Instead of helping the situation and stopping bullying, this law has probably made it worse by allowing bullies to justify their actions with religion.

Inspired by AU's blog today, http://www.au.org/blogs/wall-of-separation/halting-harassment-public-school-efforts-to-protect-students-run-into