High school student loses court battle after refusing to wear an ID tag with a GPS tracker, saying its against her religion
- Andrea Hernandez said the ID was the ‘Mark of the Beast’ by citing Bible verse and brought suit after being suspended
- Federal judge ruled school can force her to wear badge as long as the GPS tracker is removed
PUBLISHED: 11:31 EST, 9 January 2013 | UPDATED: 11:35 EST, 9 January 2013
The high school student who was suspended after she refused to wear a student ID card implanted with a GPS chip because it is against her religious beliefs has lost her legal battle.
Andrea Hernandez, from Texas, has been fighting with officials at Northside Independent School District in San Antonio since they began issuing the RFID-chip-laden student-body cards when the semester began in the fall.
The Radio Frequency Identification badge has a bar code which is able to track students movements on campus, from when they arrive until when they leave and is aimed at a way to combat truancy.
When Andrea refused to wear the badge around her neck, she was notified by the school district that she would not be able to attend John Jay High School but would have to go to another school who had not yet adopted the chip.
Andrea and her family are Christians and she said she does not want to wear the badge because it signifies Satan, or the Mark of the Beast warning in Revelations 13: 16-18.
This verse says: ‘It also forced all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads, so that they could not buy or sell unless they had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of its name.’
The chips used are the same ones found in some passports and payment cards. Districts across the nation are slowly adopting them because most school budgets are tied to daily attendance.
But U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia ruled on Tuesday that since school officials agreed to remove the RFID-chip, her religious beliefs were no longer be violated, even if administrators made her wear the regular ID badge.
‘The accommodation offered by the district is not only reasonable it removes plaintiff’s religious objection from legal scrutiny all together,’ Garcia wrote.
Andrea’s lawsuit was brought by the Rutherford Institute, which blasted Garcia’s decision.
“By declaring Andrea Hernandez’s objections to be a secular choice and not grounded in her religious beliefs, the district court is placing itself as an arbiter of what is and is not religious. This is simply not permissible under our constitutional scheme, and we plan to appeal this immediately,” the institute said in statement, according to Wired.
The institute said it would appeal to to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Andrea’s father, Steven, has been an outspoken critic of the system, saying even removing the ID chip wasn’t enough.
He earlier told InfoWars that by removing the ID chip, ‘That destroys the argument that the purpose to track students for attendance purposes.’
NISD wants to eventually force all 100K students in the sprawling district’s 112 school buildings to wear the chipped badges.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2259654/San-Antonio-student-Andrea-Hernandez-loses-court-battle-refusing-wear-ID-tag-GPS-tracker.html#ixzz2HVGx8KS8