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T-shirt case taken to Supreme Court
San Diego Union ^ | 28 OCT 2006 | Greg Moran

Posted on 10/28/2006 5:34:47 AM PDT by radar101

Lawyers for a former Poway High School student who was pulled out of class for wearing an anti-gay T-shirt have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review an early ruling in the case.

Papers filed yesterday by the Alliance Defense Fund urged the court to take up an April ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which said high school administrators were justified when they removed Tyler Chase Harper from class.

In 2004, Harper, then a sophomore, wore a shirt on which he wrote, “I will not accept what God has condemned,” and on the back, “Homosexuality is shameful 'Romans 1:27.' ” The incident occurred during a day set aside by a student group to promote tolerance of gays and lesbians.

School officials said the shirt was offensive, could have led to disruptions at school and violated the school's dress code. Harper has sued the district saying his free speech rights were violated. The case is still pending in San Diego federal court.

Meanwhile, his lawyers had asked U.S. District Court Judge John A. Houston to issue an injunction preventing the school from enforcing its dress code while the case proceeded. Houston ruled against Harper on the issue.

That ruling was upheld by the federal appeals court in April, which wrote that school districts could ban speech that is “demeaning” to core characteristics of other students, said Tim Chandler, a lawyer with the Alliance Defense Fund, which is representing Harper. The organization is a national pro-Christian legal group.

“The 9th Circuit carved out a new category of protected speech,” Chandler said, “That has the potential to transform what schools across the country can do with their speech codes.”

Jack Sleeth, a lawyer for the Poway district, disagreed. He said the appeals court decision followed the law set out under previous Supreme Court decisions regarding student speech.

Sleeth said the request to review the ruling is premature, and the high court might wait for the entire case to work its way to them.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Philosophy; US: California
KEYWORDS: aids; allyourbase; arebelongtous; disease; fagots; freespeech; lezbos; perverts; queers; sodomites; sodomy; speech; twisted

1 posted on 10/28/2006 5:34:48 AM PDT by radar101
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To: radar101
I'm sure a "Kill President Bush" T-shirt would have been perfectly acceptable with the 9th circuit court.....
2 posted on 10/28/2006 5:41:26 AM PDT by operation clinton cleanup
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To: radar101
“I will not accept what God has condemned,” and on the back, “Homosexuality is shameful 'Romans 1:27.' ”

I wonder if he would be treated the same way if his shirt said

"I will not accept that Rosie O'Donnell wants to take away my 2nd amendment rights" and on the back "Owning a gun is a fundamental right"

My bet is nothing would happen

3 posted on 10/28/2006 5:51:57 AM PDT by Popman ("What I was doing wasn't living, it was dying. I really think God had better plans for me.")
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To: operation clinton cleanup

We need a stronger majority in Senate.


4 posted on 10/28/2006 5:53:49 AM PDT by Alex1977
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To: radar101

"My free speech is not the same as your free speech" ALERT


5 posted on 10/28/2006 6:17:44 AM PDT by upchuck (Eventually the Islamofascists must be destroyed. The longer we wait, the bloodier it is going to be.)
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To: radar101
The incident occurred during a day set aside by a student group to promote tolerance of gays and lesbians.

Seems to me that the kid can "tolerate" the homosexuals in the school, but they can't "tolerate" his opinion.

6 posted on 10/28/2006 6:22:41 AM PDT by airborne (If Democrats win in November, America will suffer.)
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To: radar101

Without school uniforms, kids should be able to wear whatever the heck they want.


7 posted on 10/28/2006 6:24:59 AM PDT by proudpapa (of three.)
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To: Alex1977

We need a stronger majority in Senate.



I have been saying this since last year, but FREEPERS have completely ignored me on this and are THRILLED that we are ONLY going to lose 3-4 seats this year....strangest thing I have ever heard. I gave up trying to understand their thinking.


8 posted on 10/28/2006 6:27:24 AM PDT by napscoordinator
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To: airborne
"The incident occurred during a day set aside by a student group to promote tolerance of gays and lesbians. School officials said the shirt was offensive, could have led to disruptions at school ..."

I see. But gay day at the school was not offensive and would not have led to disruptions.

9 posted on 10/28/2006 6:27:42 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
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To: proudpapa
"Without school uniforms, kids should be able to wear whatever the heck they want."

I agree. And if a teacher or the principal finds the clothing offensive or disruptive to the work environment (a reminder: they ARE there to learn), the student will be sent home to change.

This would be excellent training for the real world work environment where exactly the same thing would happen.

10 posted on 10/28/2006 6:33:34 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
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To: robertpaulsen

Apparently, in this school,being a Christian isn't tolerated.


11 posted on 10/28/2006 6:36:46 AM PDT by airborne (If Democrats win in November, America will suffer.)
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To: airborne
"Apparently, in this school,being a Christian isn't tolerated."

Or, to rephrase, offending Christians in this school is tolerated. Offending gays is not.

12 posted on 10/28/2006 6:44:09 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
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To: robertpaulsen
Well, the Bible forewarned us we would be persecuted worldwide.
13 posted on 10/28/2006 6:47:59 AM PDT by airborne (If Democrats win in November, America will suffer.)
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To: proudpapa
Without school uniforms, kids should be able to wear whatever the heck they want.

That's why I want uniforms.

14 posted on 10/28/2006 6:49:09 AM PDT by jude24 ("I will oppose the sword if it's not wielded well, because my enemies are men like me.")
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To: upchuck

free speech is only for lib/dems...anyone else it is a hate crime!!!!!

free speech per the 9th circus is beginning to be more and more akin to a bastardized version of orwell's newspeak!!!!


15 posted on 10/28/2006 7:08:06 AM PDT by hnj_00
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To: Popman
...or worse, a tee-shirt with the words, "Christians are idiots."

I DO NOT Believe that (I am a Christian), but that is the attitude of many leftists, academics, teachers, and liberal elitists. I suspect that tee-shirt would be allowed at this school.

16 posted on 10/28/2006 7:36:44 AM PDT by Prov3456
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To: airborne

And apparently it is also not tolerated by the 9th Disctrict Court of Appeals.

I can just imagine what would happen if students requested a tolerate Christians day.


17 posted on 10/28/2006 8:40:59 AM PDT by lastchance (Hug your babies.)
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To: airborne
Apparently, in this school,being a Christian isn't tolerated.

How so? The student is free to practice his beliefs, his faith is not persecuted nor singled out. The wording of the T-shirt is a borderline threat to cause disruption. Given the day he chose to wear it, he was clearly saying it is impossible for him to accept certain other students. It's tantamount to intimidation of peers.

There should be either uniforms (certainly appropriate for younger than high school) or a restrictive dress code that would prohibit slogans of any sort, for example.

Romans 1:27 in context of that chapter on idolatry is saying they had developed same-sex lust as a manifesting dishonour to their bodies to match their spiritual dishonour to God. Rather than having children (the natural order) they had become 'corrupted' at the spirit level and God "gave them over" to homosexual acts.

Is it really a blanket condemnation of homosexuality or homosexual acts or more akin to criminals turning to homosexual activitys in prison to satisfy their lust?

18 posted on 10/28/2006 11:38:38 AM PDT by newzjunkey (Arnold-McClintock-YES 85 Parents Notified-YES 90 Eminent Domain-SanDiego:NO A,YES B & C)
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To: newzjunkey
In 2004, Harper, then a sophomore, wore a shirt on which he wrote, “I will not accept what God has condemned,” and on the back, “Homosexuality is shameful 'Romans 1:27.' ”

Show me which part of this is a "borderline threat".

19 posted on 10/28/2006 11:51:09 AM PDT by airborne (If Democrats win in November, America will suffer.)
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To: lastchance
I can just imagine what would happen if students requested a tolerate Christians day.

It's a public school. You can't have a day like that since it would be tantamount to the State endorsing a religious faith.

Supposed they could have such a day, it would be chaotic: from the Westboro Baptists to Roman Catholics to Eastern Orthodox to the Watch Tower folks to Mormons and beyond.

20 posted on 10/28/2006 11:52:23 AM PDT by newzjunkey (Arnold-McClintock-YES 85 Parents Notified-YES 90 Eminent Domain-SanDiego:NO A,YES B & C)
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To: newzjunkey

That is why I said if the students requested. Meaning that there was no compulsion from the teachers. Remember it is the 9th district that found parent's had no standing in court to sue a school district that foisted Islam on students.

I am not talking about teachings on comparitive religion but actually compelling students to actually role play being Muslim. I think they were also taken to a Mosque. I am sure some other Freeper can give more extensive detail.


21 posted on 10/28/2006 1:34:43 PM PDT by lastchance (Hug your babies.)
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To: airborne
Apparently, in this school,being a Christian isn't tolerated.

They tolerate Christianity, but it's a "Don't ask, don't tell" policy. ; )

22 posted on 10/28/2006 1:39:47 PM PDT by murphE (These are days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed but his own. --G.K. Chesterton)
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To: robertpaulsen

Please define offensive or disruptive.

What you find offensive, others may find acceptable.

Lacking school uniforms, any non-revealing outfit should be acceptable.


23 posted on 10/28/2006 3:24:22 PM PDT by proudpapa (of three.)
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To: proudpapa
"Please define offensive or disruptive."

Is it defined where you work? Is it spelled out in detail what you may wear and what you may not?

School is to prepare the students for the real world. The real world does not allow clothing that is offensive or disruptive to the work environment.

If the principal or teacher decides that the clothing is offensive or disruptive, then the clothing is offensive or disruptive. We pay big bucks for their judgment -- let them exercise it.

24 posted on 10/29/2006 5:11:57 AM PST by robertpaulsen
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To: robertpaulsen

RP,

Sorry but you are wrong. We do not pay teachers for their 'judgement'. We pay teachers to teach.

If we want to control what the children wear in a work enviroment. Then let's pay them to attend school.

Without school uniforms, the only one who should be able to restrict what a kid wears is the kids parents!


25 posted on 10/29/2006 8:42:23 AM PST by proudpapa (of three.)
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To: proudpapa
"Without school uniforms, kids should be able to wear whatever the heck they want."

No, they shouldn't. Minors are not adults, and the idea they should have all the same rights as adults is ridiculous. For that matter as an adult, try wearing a T shirt to court that says "F*uck this judge" and see how far that gets you.
26 posted on 10/29/2006 8:47:40 AM PST by SoCal Pubbie
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To: proudpapa
"We do not pay teachers for their 'judgement'. We pay teachers to teach."

We used to. Isn't maintaining order and discipline in the classroom a part of teaching?

Give back to the teacher (and principal) the power to exercise their judgment in maintaining an institution of learning, not a fashion show or a forum for political and social statements.

27 posted on 10/29/2006 9:06:43 AM PST by robertpaulsen
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To: SoCal Pubbie

Legally, someone could wear that shirt. Would it be wise? Probably not.

Also, there is a big difference between wearing something obscene into a courtroom, where the judge has total authority, and wearing something political into a public classroom.

The school may establish rules such as shorts/skirts must reach the knees etc. And schools may make restrictions regarding obscene or vulgar speech. But schools may NOT make restrictions on political speech.


28 posted on 10/29/2006 9:41:31 AM PST by proudpapa (of three.)
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To: proudpapa
"Legally, someone could wear that shirt. "

Uh, no. The judge would order you to change the shirt or leave the courtroom, and if you refused he or she would have the bailiff take you into custody and charged with contempt of court
29 posted on 10/29/2006 9:51:28 AM PST by SoCal Pubbie
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To: proudpapa
Without school uniforms, the only one who should be able to restrict what a kid wears is the kids parents!

Sorry, but that is incorrect. Schools may establish dress codes.

30 posted on 10/29/2006 9:55:39 AM PST by airborne (If Democrats win in November, America will suffer.)
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To: SoCal Pubbie

You obviously stopped reading when you got to the word 'shirt'.

Let's try again: "Legally, someone could wear that shirt. Would it be wise? Probably not."

Most judges would be unhappy with the shirt. And would call the bailiff.

However, I know one judge who's been on the bench for years who would most likely laugh and pose for pictures.


31 posted on 10/29/2006 9:56:17 AM PST by proudpapa (of three.)
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To: proudpapa
Then you agree with me. You have no legal right to wear such a shirt. It's up to the discretion of the judge. Furthermore, your post shows that individual rights to self expression are not absolute, nor do they trump the rights of others

Thank you.
32 posted on 10/29/2006 10:05:28 AM PST by SoCal Pubbie
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To: SoCal Pubbie
The judge would order you to change the shirt or leave the courtroom, and if you refused he or she would have the bailiff take you into custody and charged with contempt of court

No matter WHAT the judge ordered you to do - if you refused, you'd be held in contempt...whether it was take a shirt off, put a shirt on, leave the court, stand on your head, etc.

33 posted on 10/29/2006 10:54:46 AM PST by scan58
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Comment #34 Removed by Moderator

Attorneys Request Supreme Court Decision on “Homosexuality is Shameful” T-Shirt Case

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 3, 2006 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund filed a motion with the U.S. Supreme Court today asking the court to expedite its decision on whether to hear a case involving a California high school student prohibited from wearing a T-shirt at school expressing his biblical views on homosexual behavior. “The opportunity of students to exercise their First Amendment rights should not be lost because the students graduate before the court rules,” said ADF Senior Counsel Gary McCaleb. “One of our clients has already graduated and the other will soon. We hope the court will expedite its decision so that she has the opportunity to exercise her constitutionally guaranteed right to free speech.”

Sixteen-year-old student Tyler Harper filed suit against the Poway School District for violating his freedom of speech rights, after the school told him he could not wear a t-shirt with the words, “Be Ashamed, Our School Embraced What God Has Condemned” on the front and “Homosexuality is Shameful” on the back. “Additionally, by deciding to hear the case now, the court can consider it at the same time as Morse v. Frederick, a similar case also before the court. The 9th Circuit, which ruled on our case, ruled on that case, too, but in a conflicting manner,” McCaleb explained. The motion filed with the court today argues that “these cases send conflicting messages: speech that may be offensive or derogatory toward Christians is permissible under Frederick, but speech that may be offensive or derogatory toward homosexual conduct is not permissible under Harper. Similarly, speech that conflicts with a school policy against pro-drug messages is permissible under Frederick, but speech that conflicts with a school policy against ‘harassment’ on the basis of sexual orientation (i.e. any negative or offensive speech) is not permissible under Harper. These cases provide the Court an ideal opportunity to clarify an increasingly muddled area of constitutional law.”

A US federal appeals court in April upheld a 2004 ruling by U.S. District Judge John Houston in San Diego that found in favour of the school board. The ruling said Harper’s shirt was “denigrating” to homosexuals and their lifestyle, and “injurious to gay and lesbian students and interfered with their right to learn.”

Read full text of the motion filed today in the Harper v. Poway Unified School District
http://www.telladf.org/UserDocs/HarperExpedite.pdf.
Court Upholds School Ban on “Homosexuality is Shameful” T-Shirt
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2006/apr/06042105.html
California Student Sues School over Punishment for Wearing "Homosexuality is Shameful" T-Shirt
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2004/jun/04060310.html

ADF attorneys ask U.S. Supreme Court for expedited consideration of “T-shirt” case

WASHINGTON — Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund filed a motion with the U.S. Supreme Court today asking the court to expedite its decision on whether to hear a case involving a California high school student prohibited from wearing a T-shirt at school expressing his biblical views on homosexual behavior.  “The opportunity of students to exercise their First Amendment rights should not be lost because the students graduate before the court rules,” said ADF Senior Counsel Gary McCaleb.  “One of our clients has already graduated and the other will soon.  We hope the court will expedite its decision so that she has the opportunity to exercise her constitutionally guaranteed right to free speech.”

“Additionally, by deciding to hear the case now, the court can consider it at the same time as Morse v. Frederick, a similar case also before the court.  The 9th Circuit, which ruled on our case, ruled on that case, too, but in a conflicting manner,” McCaleb explained.  The motion filed with the court today argues that “these cases send conflicting messages:  speech that may be offensive or derogatory toward Christians is permissible under Frederick, but speech that may be offensive or derogatory toward homosexual conduct is not permissible under Harper.  Similarly, speech that conflicts with a school policy against pro-drug messages is permissible under Frederick, but speech that conflicts with a school policy against ‘harassment’ on the basis of sexual orientation (i.e. any negative or offensive speech) is not permissible under Harper.  These cases provide the Court an ideal opportunity to clarify an increasingly muddled area of constitutional law.”

The full text of the motion filed today in the case Harper v. Poway Unified School District can be read at www.telladf.org/UserDocs/HarperExpedite.pdf.  ADF attorneys filed their appeal with the Supreme Court on Oct. 27 (www.telladf.org/news/story.aspx?cid=3902).

35 posted on 11/03/2006 8:27:10 PM PST by Coleus (Roe v. Wade and Endangered Species Act both passed in 1973, Murder Babies/save trees, geese, algae)
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To: radar101

Well, they finally did it -- a teen seeking attention via a t-shirt has finally made it to the big time.


36 posted on 11/03/2006 8:28:31 PM PST by durasell (!)
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