Rights and Augusta State

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A graduate student at Georgia’s Augusta State University, Jennifer Keeton, is suing her school for violating her rights to free speech and the free exercise of religion. According to an article by Laura Diamond in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Keeton is,

accusing Augusta State University officials of violating her constitutional rights by ordering her to change her views opposing homosexuality.

Jennifer Keeton… says in her court filing that the school threatened to expel her if she didn’t complete a remediation plan that includes diversity sensitivity workshops. Keeton had said both in and out of class that, according to her Christian beliefs, homosexuality is immoral and a lifestyle choice, according to her suit.

Keeton, 24, and her attorneys argue that the student was essentially threatened with expulsion because of her religious beliefs. “A public university student shouldn’t be threatened with expulsion for being a Christian and refusing to publicly renounce her faith, but that’s exactly what’s happening here,” said Keeton’s attorney. Keeton’s remediation plan also required her to take classes to improve her writing skills.

Some 82 percent of people living in Georgia, and presumably the vast majority of students at Augusta State, are Christians.

Keeton is studying for a graduate degree in school counseling. [Image via]

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer