Cameron Franks, a senior at Rusk High School in Texas, has received international attention for a Christian t-shirt he designed in response to, what he says, was religious ‘persecution’ at the school.
Franks was upset when he learned one of his teachers was asked by the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) to remove a religious poster from her classroom. The organization received an image of the poster, which included the text from a biblical verse written inthe shape of a cross, from a student. The FFRF contacted the Rusk Independent School District (ISD) on behalf of the student, who was uncomfortable with the intersection of church and state, and asked that the poster be taken down.
Scott Davis, the Rusk ISD superintendent had the teacher remove the poster and said, “A teacher acting in that manner is in violation of the Establishment Clause,” in the First Amendment. Franks told KTRE East Texas News , "All the posters and symbols and scriptures were, they were removed from every classroom and I, I sort of didn't really understand what was happening."
Cameron was upset saying, "We've walked our halls for 4 years and we've been persecuted and called hypocrites and everybody that's a Christian, I'm sure they've had that time in their life when they've been persecuted and I knew it was time to take a stand." His stand came in the form of a red t-shirt. "I didn't think this was such a good idea at first but then I was like you know what I don't care anymore. I'm tired of it. I'm tired of hiding in the corner and so I was like, ‘I'm going to do it and I'm going to see how, how the reactions are and if they're negative so-be it and if they're positive so-be it,’" said the high school senior.
The tees promote Christianity and read, “Let GOD RULE your world, if you want GOD TO ROCK your world!” The back includes the bible verse Romans 8:31 which reads, “What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?”
Cameron’s family supports his effort. "We thought well we'll see how this goes, and you know within a few days it just, bam, bam, bam, bam and it was busted wide open," Noel Franks, Cameron’s father, told KETK NBC. They started with an order of 100 shirts and just three weeks later they have orders for almost 3,000 of the $5 tees. The Franks family is also receiving donations to get t-shirts to those who want one but may not be able to afford it.
Noel said, “It’s not about a poster being put back up, it’s about kids standing up for what they believe in.” Cameron concluded, "It's not about me. It's about God. I mean this is for the school. This is for, this is, this is the Lord's will. This is what needed to be done a long time ago."