He Ain’t Southern—He’s my Hero

By Mickey Dunaway, Professor of School Law

Mike McLeod and I spent many hours in the classrooms and hallways of Semmes High School, a good public back in the early 1960s—a school in West Mobile County, Alabama. These days Mike is back pretty close again living in the NC Mountains. We stay in touch through Facebook about Semmes-centered things, our aging-ailments, and the demise of moderate politicians and politics. I think Mike might be a Democrat, but hell, it doesn’t make any difference to me— he’s my friend whose views I tend to agree with most of the time.


Mike McCleod, posted this quote by Ulysses S. Grant recently on FB., Those folks who have had me for School Law over the years have heard me express these same sentiments many times. I did not include private schools in my caution, but Grant was correct; they fit the separation of Church and State philosophy. I have spent a long time considering and reading many U.S. Supreme Court cases on the matter. Sandy and I concluded that the responsibility for educating our children about the Almighty and the saints was ours and whatever church we chose. And that was it.


As I look at Grant’s words and reflect on them, I tend to get into a snit and my face turns red and I feel compelled to write something about what I am feeling. Here is what I am feeling right now: For otherwise sensible parents to abrogate this most important parental responsibility of teaching spirituality to their offspring to schools, might explain many of the negatives happening in our society today.

Parents, if your children do not hear it from you first supported by the religious institution of your choice, you are most foolish to assume that schools are going to provide any spiritual training of any significance.


Then he said to them, “Give therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.” -Jesus (Matthew 22:21)

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