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First Liberty Briefing

First Liberty Briefing is an exclusive podcast hosted by First Liberty Institute’s Deputy General Counsel Jeremy Dys. In about 90-seconds, once a week, Jeremy recalls the stories that have shaped America’s religious liberty, from the founding era to current legal battles and more. It’s an insider’s look at the stories, cases, people, and laws that have made America the world’s leader in protecting religious liberty.
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Jan 4, 2019

Former NFL players, Steve Largent and Chad Hennings along with two Seattle high school coaches filed friend-of-the-court briefs in support of Coach Kennedy’s right to take a knee after games. Learn more at FirstLiberty.org/Briefing.


You may be familiar with Coach Joe Kennedy, the high school football coach at Bremerton High School who was fired for taking a knee in silent prayer after the game. Recently, he received support from a few other football players and coaches.

First, Steve Largent, a retired Seattle Seahawk and Hall of Famer, and Chad Hennings, three-time Super Bowl champion with the Cowboys, explain to the court how football coaches were a positive influence on their lives, contending that Bremerton’s actions restrict free speech and impair coaches’ ability to serve as role models and mentors to their students.

Hall of famer or not, we should all seek to defend the right to free speech. It’s central to our American identity as a diverse, pluralistic society, where we foster the free exchange of ideas.

Second, from two football coaches at Garfield High School in Seattle.  These coaches gained national media attention by joining their team in kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice. In their friend-of-the-court brief, the coaches ask the court to affirm that the First Amendment protects the rights of public employees—including football coaches—to private expression.

If the Constitution protects the right of a football coach to kneel to protest injustice, it certainly protects the right of Coach Kennedy to kneel in prayer.

To learn how First Liberty is protecting religious liberty for all Americans, visit FirstLiberty.org.

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