Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

March 11, 2014

Lawsuit is unbelievable

Greensburg Daily News

---- — Dear Editor:

Well, congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Hayden for winning your lawsuit against the Greensburg School Corporation over your son’s hair length and proving to all of us that the “policy constitutes sex discrimination.”

You both must be overjoyed knowing that other boys will not have to go through the scrutiny that your son had to because he didn’t want to cut his hair and follow the rules. The thought of your son having to get his haircut to play basketball is just tragic, to say the least.

With that said, let me get to the real point of this letter. The truth of the matter is: This lawsuit had nothing to do with infringing on your son’s rights or that he could not express himself. It was about you, as parents, not making your son follow the rules to be part of an athletic team, for which no one was making him try out. Therefore, since it is a privilege and not a right to represent a school as a member of a team – your son, as well as others who participate, needs to follow the rules put in place by the coach (just like everyone else did – which turned out pretty well considering each member of the team is now wearing a state championship ring!)

In addition, as you both believe this was the right decision – this was the absolute wrong decision handed down by the court of appeals. There will be a time when your son will be pressed with much tougher issues than a haircut policy and he will not be able to file a lawsuit or stand behind his parents. In the end, he will fail, take no responsibility, and blame others for his incompetence.

I would also like to thank the both of you for adding proof to my theory (which is just one of the reasons why I decided to get out of teaching): the number one problem with public education is parenting, or I should say, the lack thereof. What you have truly taught your son is that if you do not like the rules – just file a lawsuit and try to change them. As he continues through life and I’m sure challenges more rules, please try not to file more of these frivolous lawsuits – it wastes tax payers’ hard earned dollars.

In conclusion, the next time A.H. does not like a rule put in place by his coach or boss for the betterment of a team or group, please try to be a parent, give him quality advice and make him comply. All of you may learn a positive lesson from it.


Jim Burkert

Former Pirate and proud supporter of Greensburg basketball and Greensburg Community Schools