, ,

…or Tinker v. Des Moines (393 U.S. 503, 1969).

….First Amendment rights, applied in light of the special characteristics of the school environment, are available to teachers and students. It can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate….

Also, in a Federal District Court in Pennsylvania in 2003, Flaherty v. Keystone Oaks School District [pdf]:

“The Supreme Court has held time and again, both within and out side of the school context, that the mere fact that someone might take offense at the content of speech is not sufficient justification for prohibiting it.”

On Twitter a few days ago:

@emmakate988 Emma Sullivan

Just made mean comments at gov brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot 21 Nov

[emphasis added]

Disparaging tweet about Gov. Sam Brownback lands Kansas teen in principal’s office

By Suzanne Perez Tobias

The Wichita Eagle

…Brownback’s office discovered the tweet via a Web search for his name, officials said.

Niomi Burget, Brownback’s scheduling secretary, e-mailed a screen shot of the tweet to the Youth in Government sponsor at Shawnee Mission East, writing: “I don’t know if this was someone with your group, but thought if it was, you might want it brought to your attention….”

….Sullivan’s older sister, Olivia, a sophomore majoring in political science at Wichita State University, said she thinks the controversy amounts to Brownback “censoring the opinion of a student.”

“This is something she said on her personal Twitter account,” Olivia Sullivan said.

“It’s unacceptable, first of all, to censor her and punish her for what she said. But for the governor and his staff to waste their time getting a high school student in trouble? That’s ridiculous….”

The student is supposedly composing a letter of apology. An astute student could possibly compose a meaningful letter which might educate Governor Brownback and others on his staff about perspective.

“…But for the governor and his staff to waste their time getting a high school student in trouble? That’s ridiculous…”

Yes, it is. It’s a symptom of the right wingnut republican universe.