Sunday, October 01, 2017

Cheerleaders Can Move Ahead With Suit Over Religious-Themed Run-Through Banners

In a long-running dispute, a Texas state appeals court in Kountze Independent School District v. Matthews, (TX App, Sept. 28, 2017), held that run-through banners made and used by high school cheerleaders were private speech rather than government or school-sponsored speech. The cheerleaders sued when the school prohibited their placing religious messages on their banners. The court held that the cheerleaders' private speech is protected by the First Amendment and that the state has waived governmental immunity for suits alleging unconstitutional actions. (See prior related posting.)