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February 28, 2014

Purdue, donor split over God reference for plaque

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — A Purdue University graduate is fighting the school’s refusal to allow him to include a reference to God on a dedication plaque.

A lawyer for Michael McCracken and his wife says Purdue asked what wording they wanted for a conference room plaque after the couple made a $12,500 donation to the School of Mechanical Engineering in 2012.

Their proposed inscription honored those seeking “to better the world through the understanding of God’s physical laws and innovation of practical solutions.”

Purdue attorney Steve Schultz tells the Journal & Courier that because the school is a public institution it worries about expensive litigation if it allows the inscription.

McCracken’s attorney says the First Amendment allows the proposed wording and the couple might file a lawsuit if the dispute isn’t resolved.

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