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ACLU backs off. Free speech entitles student to wear anti-gay t-shirt

School allows student to wear anti-gay T-shirt

Updated:   02/27/2013 12:22:18 AM EST


Wednesday February 27, 2013

WOLCOTT, Conn. (AP) -- Officials in a Connecticut school district have backed down in a fight over free speech rights, allowing a student to wear a T-shirt bearing an anti-gay message.

The lawyer for the school district this month wrote to the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut, saying Wolcott High School student Seth Groody may wear the T-shirt, which bears a slash mark through a rainbow. The other side showed a male and female stick figure holding hands above the message "Excessive Speech Day," the ACLU of Connecticut said.

The ACLU said Groody wore the shirt April 20, which was designated as a day of awareness of harassment toward gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Groody complied with an order from a school administrator that he remove his shirt and replace it with one depicting a Wolcott High School symbol, the ACLU said.

Sandra Staub, legal director of the ACLU of Connecticut, said the district’s reversal teaches students that the First Amendment "is not merely a theoretical discussion topic but a real and vital guarantee" of free speech rights.

The ACLU prepared a lawsuit to be filed in federal court demanding that the school district be stopped from enforcing its T-shirt ban and that no disciplinary measures be taken against Groody.

Without elaborating, school lawyer Christine Chinni wrote to the ACLU on Feb. 14, saying Groody may wear the T-shirt. She declined



to comment beyond what she wrote in the letter.

Edward Groody, Seth’s father, referred questions to the ACLU.

The ACLU disagrees "very strongly" with Seth’s views on gay rights, but its opinion has no bearing on his right to express those views, Staub said.

http://www.berkshireeagle.com/ci_22676439/school-allows-student-wear-anti-gay-t-shirt?source=most_viewed

by on Feb. 27, 2013 at 10:30 AM
Replies (261-270):
CadincesMom
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 7:36 AM

While I do not in anyway like the message that his shirt was sending I am glad that he stood up for his rights and that the freedom of speech was not limited in this case

Lizard_Lina
by Silver Member on Mar. 1, 2013 at 7:38 AM
Repeat and agree


Quoting Thbear59:

Good for them.  We should have the freedom to disagree with one another.


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Billiejeens
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 7:40 AM
1 mom liked this

 

Well, nationally we rank about 25th in the world in education, so if you and your spouse get a moment between patting each other on the back, maybe you could try to improve that.

Not even Bush supporters, think NCLB ended up being a good idea.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

I'm a teacher and married to a teacher.  I happen to know that in MA teachers are very much held accountable for the learning of English/Language Arts, Composition, Math, and Science that the students accomplish by the federal standards set forth in NCLB, despite the liberal social climate of the state.  Whether or not you choose to take me seriously about this is no concern of mine.

Quoting Billiejeens:

 

Jesus Christ, now I can't even come close to taking you seriously.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

The feds already have standards that hold schools' feet tot the fire over their students learning the "three R's".  It's called No Child Left Behind.  Promoting one day of social tolerance does not mean they have blown academics out of the water.

Quoting candlegal:

You do realize that this stuff is more important in the government run schools, forget the three R's.   They apparently have done so.  Indoctrination  is what it is all about.

Quoting Billiejeens:

WTF is a school system doing promoting a day of Gay awareness in the first place.

The Public School system is not the place for these ideas.

Get a handle on Math, Science and English and stop pushing social agendas on our kids.

Where the hell are all the posters who don't think the classroom setting where our kids are basically held hostage, is a place for social dogma?



 

 



 

Billiejeens
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 7:44 AM

 

Not assuming anything, I simply restated what you wrote.

If you are now clarifying that too, well....................

Quoting NewMom11222011:

You're assuming an awful lot about me based on one thread's exchanges.  I do have core values, one them being that "all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" (Thomas Jefferson).  

Quoting Billiejeens:

 

I can't be responsible for you not having any core values, I can only be responsible for mine/

Quoting NewMom11222011:

So, it's never a good idea to re-examine what your beliefs are and how they affect others?  This site makes me clarify my beliefs on a daily basis and sometimes to modify them based on evidence presented.

Quoting Billiejeens:

 Nor should it.

 

Quoting NewMom11222011:

Clearly.

Quoting Billiejeens:

It has not.
Quoting NewMom11222011:

Has it occurred to you that others might find your behavior/attitudes abhorrent?


Quoting Billiejeens:

 

 

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

 

Quoting JLo1486:

Good. He does have the right to do so even if many don't agree. I'm tired of people getting trampled on for expressing their own rights.

 "Groody wore the shirt April 20, which was designated as a day of awareness of harassment toward gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. "

He was not expressing his own rights. He was being disrespectful. of all days to wear his shirt, he chose THAT one. He had 179 other days in the school year to wear that shirt but he chose the One day in which it was a designated day of awareness of harassment toward LBGT students.

I am so sick of people pulling out the constitution as justification for ignorance, prejudice and hate.

 

 I am so sick of people using my tax dollars to promote the idea that if one doesn't accept abhorrent behavior, then they are the problem.




 

 


 

 



 

NewMom11222011
by Bronze Member on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:03 AM

First, I hate NCLB because it doesn't address the academic problems schools have.  That being said, it's the current law of the land and administrators and teachers continue to be judged on it.

My husband and I, as two individuals, can't change the national ranking or even our state's ranking which is already quite high.  Not even you could do that as an individual.

I'm curious what you do to improve the educational culture in your area.  Serve on your local school board, volunteer in your child/children's school(s), work in the PTA/PTO, some other meaningful contribution?  After this thread I have no doubt that you will work with your area schools to develop dress codes that protect the free speech of all students whether or not they embrace homosexuality and gay equality/marriage.

Quoting Billiejeens:


Well, nationally we rank about 25th in the world in education, so if you and your spouse get a moment between patting each other on the back, maybe you could try to improve that.

Not even Bush supporters, think NCLB ended up being a good idea.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

I'm a teacher and married to a teacher.  I happen to know that in MA teachers are very much held accountable for the learning of English/Language Arts, Composition, Math, and Science that the students accomplish by the federal standards set forth in NCLB, despite the liberal social climate of the state.  Whether or not you choose to take me seriously about this is no concern of mine.

Quoting Billiejeens:


Jesus Christ, now I can't even come close to taking you seriously.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

The feds already have standards that hold schools' feet tot the fire over their students learning the "three R's".  It's called No Child Left Behind.  Promoting one day of social tolerance does not mean they have blown academics out of the water.

Quoting candlegal:

You do realize that this stuff is more important in the government run schools, forget the three R's.   They apparently have done so.  Indoctrination  is what it is all about.

Quoting Billiejeens:

WTF is a school system doing promoting a day of Gay awareness in the first place.

The Public School system is not the place for these ideas.

Get a handle on Math, Science and English and stop pushing social agendas on our kids.

Where the hell are all the posters who don't think the classroom setting where our kids are basically held hostage, is a place for social dogma?









Mama2Spencerninja

Billiejeens
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:12 AM

 

My children are past school age and my grand-kids are just starting school.

When I had children in public school, a lot of my time was spent undoing the damage perpetrated on the kids, with the misinformation and social engineering curriculum pushed in public school.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

First, I hate NCLB because it doesn't address the academic problems schools have.  That being said, it's the current law of the land and administrators and teachers continue to be judged on it.

My husband and I, as two individuals, can't change the national ranking or even our state's ranking which is already quite high.  Not even you could do that as an individual.

I'm curious what you do to improve the educational culture in your area.  Serve on your local school board, volunteer in your child/children's school(s), work in the PTA/PTO, some other meaningful contribution?  After this thread I have no doubt that you will work with your area schools to develop dress codes that protect the free speech of all students whether or not they embrace homosexuality and gay equality/marriage.

Quoting Billiejeens:

 

Well, nationally we rank about 25th in the world in education, so if you and your spouse get a moment between patting each other on the back, maybe you could try to improve that.

Not even Bush supporters, think NCLB ended up being a good idea.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

I'm a teacher and married to a teacher.  I happen to know that in MA teachers are very much held accountable for the learning of English/Language Arts, Composition, Math, and Science that the students accomplish by the federal standards set forth in NCLB, despite the liberal social climate of the state.  Whether or not you choose to take me seriously about this is no concern of mine.

Quoting Billiejeens:

 

Jesus Christ, now I can't even come close to taking you seriously.

Quoting NewMom11222011:

The feds already have standards that hold schools' feet tot the fire over their students learning the "three R's".  It's called No Child Left Behind.  Promoting one day of social tolerance does not mean they have blown academics out of the water.

Quoting candlegal:

You do realize that this stuff is more important in the government run schools, forget the three R's.   They apparently have done so.  Indoctrination  is what it is all about.

Quoting Billiejeens:

WTF is a school system doing promoting a day of Gay awareness in the first place.

The Public School system is not the place for these ideas.

Get a handle on Math, Science and English and stop pushing social agendas on our kids.

Where the hell are all the posters who don't think the classroom setting where our kids are basically held hostage, is a place for social dogma?



 

 


 

 



 

candlegal
by Judy on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:21 AM
1 mom liked this

Oh for God's sake, give me a break.   They have been lowering the standards in the government run schools for years.  One day of social tolerance, lol,  okay.

The standards in the government schools went downhill way before NCLB.   By the way that had more to do with the teachers teaching than it did with the actual policy.


Quoting NewMom11222011:

The feds already have standards that hold schools' feet tot the fire over their students learning the "three R's".  It's called No Child Left Behind.  Promoting one day of social tolerance does not mean they have blown academics out of the water.

Quoting candlegal:

You do realize that this stuff is more important in the government run schools, forget the three R's.   They apparently have done so.  Indoctrination  is what it is all about.

Quoting Billiejeens:

WTF is a school system doing promoting a day of Gay awareness in the first place.

The Public School system is not the place for these ideas.

Get a handle on Math, Science and English and stop pushing social agendas on our kids.

Where the hell are all the posters who don't think the classroom setting where our kids are basically held hostage, is a place for social dogma?




Veni.Vidi.Vici.
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:51 AM


Quoting DestinyHLewis:

This kid can wear a hate message, but another child was forced to take off a shirt bearing a cross and our flag in honor of his Marine brother? Yeah. That's totally balanced. Smdh. 

That's why I posted that other article

PamR
by Pam on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:53 AM
1 mom liked this

Our schools don't allow any clothing with any kind of message that can be controversial.  And I think that's a good thing.  If this kid wants to wear the shirt on his own time, that's his business.

Veni.Vidi.Vici.
by on Mar. 1, 2013 at 9:54 AM


Quoting gdiamante:

Veni, I haven't read through the 260 posts... but the ACLU went to bat for the T-shirt wearer. The school district had said he couldn't wear it... ACLU got involved after the school district told him he couldn't wear the shirt. Your headline is a little off.

I see what you mean. I didn't mean for the title to make it seem like the ACLU didn't support the student.

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