The Associated Press reports, “Federal appeals court: Hawaii man can’t be teacher because of his views on sex with minors.”
This was absolutely the right decision, though I expect the precedent will be used against Christians (see below).
The University of Hawaii didn’t violate First Amendment rights when it denied a teaching certificate for a Caltech-educated aspiring high school teacher who expressed views condoning adults having sex with minors, a panel of federal appeals court judges ruled Tuesday.
Mark Oyama earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the California Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in physics from the University of Hawaii. In 2010, he enrolled in the secondary education certification program at the University of Hawaii’s Manoa campus, which is the state’s only nationally accredited institution that recommends students for certification as secondary school teachers.
“Oyama’s statements concerning sexual relationships between adults and children were of central concern to the faculty,” according to a ruling by the panel of judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. In a class assignment he wrote: “Personally I think that online child predation should be legal, and find it ridiculous that one could be arrested for comments they make on the Internet.” He went on to write that “real life child predation should be legal” as long as it’s consensual and that the age of consent should be “either 0, or whatever age a child is when puberty begins.”
When a professor discussed the statements with Oyama, he said it would be fine for a 12-year-old student to have a consensual relationship with a teacher, but that he would obey the law and report the relationship, according to the ruling.
The comments were relevant in determining whether he should be allowed to work as a public school teacher, the panel concluded, and the university’s decision was “directly related to defined and established professional standards” at state and national levels.
This is my question: Do other people believe the same things that Oyama believes? I have a hard time imagining that Oyama has not found other people who share his beliefs and that re-affirm them. It would be likely he would reach out to like-minded people on the internet.
If any of these people were going to school to be teachers, and were inclined to be open about their beliefs, they have learned to stay silent. And I doubt many of them were planning to be so outspoken.
Which brings up another question, how many of such people are already teachers?
As for how this ruling will be used against Christians, a man was denied a job because of his beliefs about sexuality. While it was well deserved, it is only a matter of time until Christians are treated the same way. The “civil rights” of homosexuals and transgenders include the prohibitions of “micro-aggressions” against them. Christian who might tell confused children the truth will be considered a threat to their safety. So keeping them from teaching will not be ruled a violation of their First-Amendment rights.