WE have some peculiar news to report in the ongoing saga of James Corbett, the California teacher whose classroom remarks that creationism is “superstitious nonsense” were ruled to have violated the Constitution’s establishment clause. Our last post on this was here: Kid Who Sued Corbett: A Political Star?
At that time, the creationist kid who successfully sued his teacher was being treated like some kind of weird religious rock star, and it seemed to us that his “fame” in certain limited circles was being exploited to raise money for political candidates.
The kid was also scheduled to speak at a fund-raiser to benefit the law firm that had represented him, as it had been determined that they wouldn’t be awarded fees for suing Corbett. See: Corbett:Not Liable for Legal Fees.
But these events sometimes take a strange turn, and that seems to be the situation here. In the Orange County Register we read: Student who sued over anti-Christian remarks must pay district. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:
In a legal twist that challenges the notion of what a prevailing party is, a federal court clerk on Friday awarded $19,688 in court-related fees to the attorneys who represented high school teacher James Corbett, sued two years ago for making anti-Christian comments in class.
Verily, He works in mysterious ways. Let’s read on:
Milli Borgarding, the deputy in charge of the Santa Ana division of the U.S. District Court clerk’s office, determined that although Corbett violated the First Amendment rights of a former student, the money should be awarded to his team because the same attorneys represented Capistrano Unified School District, which was found not liable for Corbett’s actions.
The clerk’s office makes those decisions? Anyway, let’s continue:
The fees are to be paid by Murrietta-based Advocates for Faith & Freedom, the Christian legal group that represented student Chad Farnan on a pro-bono basis.
Hey, it’s not only the school district that’s looking for legal fees, there’s also the teachers’ union, which was also found not liable in the case. Here’s more:
Although Friday’s award does not include attorneys’ fees [for the union], Capistrano Unified and the California Teachers Association have filed separate motions seeking a combined $378,519 in attorneys’ fees. A hearing to determine whether Advocates for Faith & Freedom must also pay these fees is scheduled for Nov. 9.
We’re starting to really enjoy this. One last excerpt from the end of the article:
Tyler said that [the creationist kid’s law firm] Advocates for Faith & Freedom is planning to appeal the entire case next week to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Corbett had to sweat through this mess for two years, so it seems only fair that the creationist lawyers should also sweat a bit. We may yet see justice done here.
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