Purdue University Bans 'God' From Donor's Plaque
Dr. Michael McCracken and his wife made a $12,500 donation to Purdue University's School of Mechanical Engineering in 2012, but the couple says the school refused to include the word "God" on their donation plaque.
According to the Indianapolis Star, McCracken wanted the plaque to mention God and his parents: "To those who seek to better the world through the understanding of God's physical laws and innovation of practical solutions. In honor of Dr. William 'Ed' and Glenda McCracken."
Purdue turned down McCracken's wording because the school believes the reference to God would violate the U.S. Constitution's Establishment Clause, reports The Christian Post.
However, Jeremiah Dys, of the Liberty Institute, which is representing McCracken, said in a press release: "Purdue's ban on any reference to God by a private speaker violates the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. Dr. McCracken's plaque language is private speech that is protected by the First Amendment. Purdue allows dozens of other private speakers to express their values and views on plaques around campus; it cannot legally single out Dr. McCracken for discrimination."
In response, Steve Schultz, legal counsel for Purdue, told the Indianapolis Star, "If we had confidence that the courts would find this private speech as the donor's counsel argues, then we would agree immediately and strongly."