school uniforms

Colorado High School Decides ‘Marriage Is So Gay’ Shirts Are Totally Hip Now

After banning senior Kate Cohn from wearing a “Marriage is so gay” tee in support of marriage equality because, according to Principal Mark Carara, it was akin to promoting drug or alcohol abuse, Colorado’s Falcon High School decided Tuesday she could wear the shirt after all. something about the ACLU threatening a lawsuit? (Principal Carara did not have a problem with Cohn’s friend wearing an anti-abortion shirt.)

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  • GlacierGuy

    Everybody needs to learn the term, “Public School!” That means that citizens/students are free to express the constitutional rights of free speech within the law regardless if the administration disagrees with the statement or not. Just because you’re in public school doesn’t mean you loose your rights!

  • Mike in Asheville

    @ No. 1 GlacierGuy

    Sorry, Guy, but the SCOTUS thinks very differently. The Court’s precedent, actually several precedents, is that public schools CAN, and students ARE, subject to certain restrictions that do not apply to adults. For example, schools/districts are entitled to enforce dress codes, uniform requirements, review and approval (or, subject to censorship) of speech and writing. Further, states have the constitutional right to subject other restrictions on minors including requirements for being in good standing in school to enjoy driving privileges, employment, and participation in non-school state funded programs.

    The balance of whether a restriction of a student’s/minor’s Constitutional rights is constitutional is the purpose of the subject restriction. Schools cannot allow discrimination against any one student or group of students in rules not applied to all students.

    In the case of Constance McMillen, the Mississippi teen lesbian denied the right to take her girl friend to the school’s senior prom, the district court ruled that McMillen’s right to take the date of her choice was a violation because all other students were allowed to choose their own dates.

    In this T-shirt case, the school did not apply restrictions to political opinions to ALL political opinions, just pro-gay free speech. The school, though, can certainly censor/ban free speech on T-shirts for foul language included on a political T-shirt (such as: Fuck all homophobic assholes) or T-shirts that cause disruption of school and classroom activities (such as: “Abortions = Murder”) whereas “Prolife = pro for every life” or “Prochoice = Make your own choices” would be okay provided the school does not ban all political T-shirts.


    Now a good debate would be should Congress enact laws or a Constitutional Amendment declaring that ALL citizens, including dependent minors, enjoy ALL rights under the Constitution. Should Congress act to overturn SCOTUS precedents? I would have to be convinced of the better choice before declaring my position as there are valid points on both sides of the question.

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