September 22, 2008

Anti-Obama Shirt Leads To Suspension For Aurora, CO Fifth Grader

**Update 2--Student admits it was father's slogan on t-shirt, but stands by the shirt and his first amendment rights to wear it to school

**Update--One legal perspective: "This case clearly seems to be an illegal curtailment of this student’s rights”

The offending home-made shirt.

For being "distracting" to the educational process
An Aurora 11-year-old says his first amendment rights are being trampled after he was suspended for wearing a homemade shirt that reads "Obama is a terrorist's best friend."

The fifth grader wore it on a day when students were asked to wear red, white and blue to show their patriotism.

The boy's father Dann Dalton describes himself as a "proud conservtive" who has taken part in some controversial anti-abortion protests. Dalton says the school made a major mistake by suspending his son for wearing the shirt.

"It's the public school system," Dalton says, "let's be honest, it's full of liberal loons."

The school district told Daxx Dalton that he had the choice of changing his shirt, turing his shirt inside out or being suspended.

Daxx chose suspension.
Kid's got stones. (video)

And the Aurora School District?
"They're taking away my right of freedom of speech," he says. "If I have the right to wwear this shirt I'm going to use it. And if the only way to use it is get suspended, then I'm going to get suspended."

Daxx's dad agrees with him and is encouraging his son to sstand his ground. "The facts are his rights were violated. Period."

Aurora public schools could not talk about the case but said they "Respect a student's right to free speech, such as the right tto wear specific clothing" but they said they review any situation that interrupts the learning environment.
Besides the fact that MyFoxColorado needs a spell-check for all the double letters, the shirt itself makes no reference to Barack Obama being a terrorist, but that terrorists would most likely find an Obama administration much less stressful than a McCain administration. No doubt a decline in offensive actions outside of the United States in targeting terrorism and a return to the terrorism-as-criminal policy adopted under Clinton would ease the terrorists' minds.

And offensive? I'm sure that Aurora's schools have never permitted anti-Bush/Republican/Conservative shirts. As long as the kid's shirt doesn't feature pornography or profanity it might be hard to find any reason for forcing him to accept suspension rather than preserving his freedom of expression as seen on the shirt.

And if the other kids don't like it or don't agree, then they have just learned a great lesson in dissent, plurality of viewpoints, and freedom of speech. They need to be disabused of the "right not to be offended" meme that characterizes left-wing activism early, and often.

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