Thursday, September 07, 2006

US School Fights Freedom of Speech

This article, published on the 30th August 2006 in the Anchorage Daily News, discusses the absurd and costly legal attempts by a high school in Alaska to defend its actions against a former student who had waved a banner with "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" on it as the Olympic torch relay passed through Juneau. The school confiscated his banner and suspended him even though he "wasn't on school property, wasn't at a school-sponsored event, wasn't under direct supervision of school employees and wasn't representing the school in any way imaginable". The young student, Joe Frederick, then claimed that his First Amendment right to free speech had been violated and the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal agreed with him. However the school is trying to take the case to the Supreme Court. Let's hope the so-called free world defends the First Amendment.

1 comment:

800 pound gorilla said...

I'm assuming that the child in question has full parental support. If the child lacks the support of even one parent the case against him is ironclad. The supportive parent may be ruled "unfit" or a "bad influence" and the school can use this as leverage to win the case [for the "good" parent].

If both parents are on board, I don't see how the state can win this case. It would seem that the drug warriors need to pick their battles more carefully. Small wonder they recruited a "big gun". This case will set a precedent for teen rights that the nanny staters will regret.