Teacher fired for refusing loyalty oath

In a story right out of the headlines from fifty years ago, Wendy Gonaver was recently fired from a teaching job at Cal State Fullerton for refusing to sign a loyalty oath.

The oath, a remnant of the 50s Red Scare, required Gonaver, a Quaker and a pacifist, to swear to "defend" the U.S. and California Constitutions "against all enemies, foreign and domestic." She was willing to to sign she could attach an addendum expressing her pacifism - a practice allowed by other state agencies. But Cal State Fullerton insisted she sign the oath as is if she wanted the job.

Excuse me, but anyone who wants people to sign a loyalty oath meant to enforce doctrinal conformity is an enemy of the U.S. Constitution and the free and vigorous debate of democracy.

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