Saturday, April 19, 2008

Fighting for Freshwater

So, much to the distress of many of you, I have no pictures to give you of the hallways lined with "I Support Mr.Freshwater" posters. There is a very good reason for this.

As many of you who have been following this story know, yesterday was the student's turn to protest the school boards (stupid) decision. The day started with wearing either a religious t-shirt or a shirt supporting Mr.Freshwater, and bringing your Bible to school, and sitting it on your desk. Students, fortunately, are not prohibited from putting Bibles on their desks, (go figure) so we took advantage of that and ran with it.

Unfortunately, the FCCLA State Leadership Convention was Thursday and Friday, causing me to miss out on a lot of the activities. I brought my Bible and carried it with me in the halls while I was at the school, and the shown poster was distributed to several students who eagerly hung them on their lockers. I did likewise. (Kudos to Bro.LJ for making those up on the spot for us!) There were those signs, which people found awesome, and some other signs that had been made up as the news was announced, with crayons and notebook paper. "We Support Mr.Freshwater", "You Go, John", and other catchy phrases were all plastered on the lockers. Everywhere. All over the halls. In addition to that, I had expected only a few people to bring their Bibles, as usually happens with organized events. But the halls had so many Bibles in them, I about cried. It was beautiful. I had to hurry out and catch the bus to go to Columbus for the convention, but thought, "Hey, I'll get a picture when I get back. More fliers will be distributed by then and more support will be shown."

I went to the conference and got the following text from Carolyn-

"Wow. Talking to a neighbor. Quite a big stink @ schoool- he was
saying protests. Seniors walking out at noon. Possible lock down. He kept
his daughter home today."

There was no walk out, but some big events DID happen while I was gone. There were huge numbers of Bibles on desks, of course. And no one got in trouble, thank God.

When I walked in to the school at 2:30, there was 1 poster in the ENTIRE school on a locker. 1. That's it. No others. I asked Rachel what happened and she said that during 5th period (her lunch), the principal had gone on a rampage and torn down ALL of the posters. No idea what prompted that. Apparently there is a rule regarding posters and signs on lockers. One that has NEVER been enforced while I've been there. And strangely enough, all of the football/basketball/swimming/other sports signs are still on lockers. But I guess that's not the point, now is it.

I had to get on the bus, so unfortunately, I was unable to take part in the big protest after school, dubbed "Rally at Spirit Rock". Caleb McCoy, who is usually really shy and timid, organized the whole thing, and gave a huge speech to the mob of kids and others at the rally. When I looked out the bus window, there was a huge crowd, a news crew, a state rep, and a very unhappy looking principal. I couldn't help but smile at that.

In the end, 20 pages with 48 signatures were completed on a petition stating-

“By signing this petition I am showing my support for Mr. John Freshwater
and his stance for displaying his Bible. He had all rights to do so, and we
stand by his side.”

I'm honestly not sure where we're going from here. I'm totally on board with this whole thing and am ready to do whatever I can to help. My dad wrote a letter to the superintendent about it, which I was psyched about. Apparently, my aunt and uncle are on board with this as well. I was texting Aunt Julie as I was watching the rally from the bus and she said-

"Ken said he wishe he was there...he would join u! Can you take pics?"

Well, here are the pics I took. Not very good, but hopefully you can see the mob.

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