California teacher resigns after receiving death threats over Christian view on marriage
In response to the cover photo of online school paper Expressions' LGBT edition in May which featured two women kissing, San Luis Obispo High School special education teacher Michael Stack sent the editor a letter condemning homosexuality. He attracted a significant amount of backlash after quoting Romans 1:16-32 which detailed several acts of wickedness and said those who participate in homosexual acts suffer "as a result of this sin."
In addition, Stack said he loves his colleagues and the students at the school, but he loves God more and that he wrote the letter in obedience to the Lord. His comments attracted significant amount of backlash and a death threat, which prompted him to resign on May 11, Life Site News reported.
Reacting to Stack's comments, city mayor Heidi Harmon posted a statement on Facebook and called the content of the letter "unacceptable" and participated in a pro-LGBT protest at the school. However, the San Luis Coastal Unified School District released a statement acknowledging Stack's First Amendment rights and saying the government should not prevent people from sharing their ideas even if it disagrees with them.
"As a district, we understand that students do not shed their First Amendment rights at school, and we respect the rights of our students to speak on controversial topics," said school district superintendent Eric Prater and Principal Leslie O'Connor in a joint statement released the day before Stack resigned. "We applaud the high school's commitment to open dialogue and a free exchange of ideas in its student newspaper ... In a similar manner, we acknowledge the right of our staff to voice their opinions."
Mark Nakamura of the San Luis Obispo Tribune, who is also a Christian, defended Stack against his critics. He said both the embattled teacher and the LGBT community have the right to use the school paper to voice out their stance on homosexuality and marriage. He added that Stack's freedom to express his belief is being attacked by people who disagree with him by threatening his life.