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11th Circuit Court of Appeals strikes again

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The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has been on a roll lately. It would be difficult to call them “biased” or “political” in any way. It is as if they are going out of their way to show they haven’t been politicized like SCOTUS and are ruling solely on the law. They put Florida District “judge” Aileen Cannon in her place by overturning her ruling appointing a special master in the Mar-a-Lago document fiasco, and now, they have done it again in a case filed in the Northern District of Georgia by the Southern Poverty Law Center (“SPLC”) in 2021.

Seeking to protect the health of four children with recognized, protected disabilities, SLPC filed suit against the Cobb County School District for rescinding its Covid 19 protections for children like these. Simply put, the school board was pressured by anti-mask parents, bowing to their demands, and putting these four children’s lives at risk. SPLC moved for an immediate injunction, which Chief Judge Timothy Batten almost immediately denied. Because of that denial, the parents of these children had no choice put to remove their children from school-upsetting not only the lives of the children but their own lives-to homeschool them to keep them safe. Some of these children were extremely susceptible to Covid 19.

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The four children at the center of this suit have disabilities that are directly impacted by exposure to Covid. One has Duchenne muscular dystrophy and must take steroids, which compromise the immune system. Another suffers from acute myeloid leukemia and controls his illness with chemotherapy, which also weakens the immune system. Yet another has severe asthma with a history of pneumonia and upper respiratory infections, and the fourth suffers from bronchiectasis. These four children were enrolled in in-person learning because Covid protocols were in place, but they were taken away shortly before the school year began. When their parents tried to enroll them in virtual, they were told it was “too late.” The lives of these children were of no consequence to the Cobb County School District, and SPLC sued on their behalf for an immediate injunction, which Batten denied.


The students appealed because the “district court impermissibly broadened their claim and redefined the scope of the program at issue in this case.” The Eleventh Circuit began with two words: “We agree.” The Eleventh Circuit also opined that: “The denial of a preliminary injunction ‘rests within the sound discretion of the district court.’ We will reverse only if the district court abused its discretion or if the denial is contrary to a rule of equity.” That court found that the district court either abused its discretion (like Aileen Cannon) or it had denied these children contrary to a rule of equity.

It is unfortunate that politics took priority over people’s children. Not one child in the school district would have been harmed by wearing a mask, but these children could die because other parents want to make a point. Organizations like SPLC exist for this very reason. These parents now have a shot at making school safe for their children so that they can return to the classroom.

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