The Satanic Temple is asserting its stance on corporal punishment in schools with a billboard put up in a small town northwest of Fort Worth.
Drivers headed down Route 199 in Springtown, Texas will now see a black billboard with a prominently-displayed message: “Never be hit in school again. Exercise your religious rights.”
The billboard, paid for by the Satanic Temple, also lists The Satanic Temple’s Protect Children Project website, the temple’s online hub for promoting the “inviolability” of the body.
Placing the billboard in Springtown, about 25 miles outside of Fort Worth, is strategic. Springtown ISD still permits corporal punishment in its schools.
“Corporal punishment — spanking or paddling the student — may be used as a discipline management technique in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct and policy FO(LOCAL) in the district’s policy manual,” according to the Springtown ISD student handbook.
The issue really flared up in 2012, after a male assistant principal spanked two female students at Springtown High School.
In a press release Thursday, Satanic Temple spokesman Lucien Greaves said the district has received “some negative attention, but not enough, in the Temple’s opinion” in the wake of the 2012 incident.
Greaves called Springtown a “barbaric backwater town” for its practice of corporal punishment in schools. He said in the release that the billboard should be “disturbing” to the city’s residents.
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