SoCal School Bans Christian Books

Receives cease-and-desist letter citing First Amendment violation

A Springs Charter School in Temecula, Ca., recently targeted and removed Christian-based books and books by Christian authors and publishers from its library, according to PacificJustice.org.

A parent contacted Pacific Justice Institute, a non-profit legal organization that defends religious and constitutional rights, informing them of the mass purge. One of the books targeted was The Hiding Place, about Holocaust survivor Corrie ten Booms, who because of her strong Christian beliefs hid Jews in her home to protect them from the Nazi invasion.

On Aug. 22, a PJI attorney sent the school a cease-and-desist letter, telling administrators that they are violating students' First Amendment rights and ignoring a Supreme Court-backed standing that "strongly disapproves of school libraries removing books based on opposition to their content or message."

PJI said the letter was ignored by the superintendent of Springs Charter Schools, Dr. Kathleen Hermsmeyer, who said, “We . . . do not allow sectarian materials on our state-authorized lending shelves."

Asking the next logical question was PJI President Brad Dacus:

Are they going to ban the sermons or speeches of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.?  What about the Declaration of Independence that invokes the laws of nature and nature’s God? 

Dacus called the Christian book ban "ill-conceived" and "illegal," and is fully prepared to pursue further legal action if necessary.

Issues