After rejecting a digital billboard featuring Jesus with tattoos, the Lubbock Independent School District won a First Amendment lawsuit against illustrator David Miller on May 29. In his ruling against Miller, U.S. district judge Sam Cummings said that the school district was right in rejecting Miller’s advertisement for the Christian website JesusTattoo.org.
Miller is the founder of Little Pencil, a group that promotes the Bible’s teachings through contemporary marketing campaigns. His innovative ad featured a tattooed Jesus during one of the high school football games, which the school district rejected in October 2013. The basis for rejecting the ad was that it appeared to be a form of proselytizing and also violated the school district’s open tattoo policy. Thereafter, Miller sued the school district claiming that his free speech was being restricted.
“Throughout this process, we have asserted that our actions were in keeping with district policies, state and federal law, and we are pleased that the court ruled in favor of Lubbock ISD… We will continue to focus on our mission of educating students and hope we can put this behind us and give our complete attention to that important work,” said the district in a statement after the ruling.
Miller had included a link to JesusTattoo.com alongside a tatted-up picture of the “son of god” in his digital billboard. According to Miller, the website teaches people how to become a Christian by showing Jesus removing negative tattoos from his followers’ bodies and replacing them with positive ones.
Photo Credit: Jesustattoo.org