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Officials Defend School Prayer in Oklahoma, Alabama

10-14-2015
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Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt has taken a high profile stand for religious freedom.

Pruitt officially told the state board that governs sporting activities that it can no longer ban student prayer at school sports events.

He argues that a current policy blocking public prayer at playoff events is too broad.

"You just can't uniformely, arbitrarily say, 'We are going to allow all speech except religious speech,' and that is why it is overbroad," Pruitt said.

He points out that since the state allows open announcements in a public forum, then prohibiting only religious speech violates the Constitution and students' rights.

Meanwhile, a school in Ashdown, Arkansas, is coming under fire from the Freedom from Religion Foundation.

The liberal group threatened the school over prayers by the high school band director, as well as prayers at football games.

But Ashdown School District Superintendent Jason Sanders is not backing down, saying they broke no laws.

"We feel like that the freedom of our students to express themselves will hold up in a court of law," Sanders said.

He says student groups will lead the introductions at school events in the future.

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