A university football team’s fired offensive coordinator is going on the offense in court to get some satisfaction, the Kansas City Star reports.
The firing offense, says Kurt Beathard, was that he took down a Black Lives Matter poster from his office door and put up a handmade replacement that read “All Lives Matter to Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
”It was this sign that got him canned from the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach positions with the Illinois State Redbirds in September of 2020, he said, charging in his suit that he was retaliated against after he “expressed his own religious and political views” and “did not toe the party line regarding the Black Lives Matter organization.” Beathard filed the suit on Nov. 30.
A BLM poster was placed on Beathard’s office door in August of 2020, when “the campus community was dealing with tension resulting from the death of George Floyd,” the lawsuit says. After he replaced the sign with his own version, Beathard’s lawsuit contends, ISU head football coach Brock Spack asked him to take down the “All Lives Matter” poster and he did. Less than a week later, Beathard heard from Spack “that he didn’t like the direction of the offense” and that he was being fired from his position as offensive coordinator,” the lawsuit says.
Beathard charges that his First Amendment rights were violated, and issuing Slack and LarryLyons, the school’s former Director of Athletics, who retired at the end of 2020.
Slack and school officials declined to comment when reached by McClatchy News, and efforts to reach Lyons were not successful.
“It’s come to this. If you put the government’s message on your door, you keep your job. If you replace it with your own message, you’re fired,” Doug Churdar, Beathard’s lawyer, said in a statement.