Video: Fifth-grader suspended from public school for wearing anti-Obama t-shirt

posted at 12:56 pm on September 23, 2008 by Allahpundit

Needless to say, there must be some hefty consciousness-raising convos happening at the dinner table to motivate someone who won’t be able to vote for another seven years to design his own anti-Messiah shirts. But never mind that. Unconstitutional or no? Answer: Probably, although the latest major Supreme Court statement on school speech — the “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” case — left the jurisprudence sufficiently vague that you can argue it either way. The Warren Court standard was that students had more or less the same right of free speech as adults so long as they didn’t use it to cause any substantial disruptions at school. The Roberts Court’s gloss, per the “Bong Hits” opinion, is that the strict “substantial disruption” standard no longer applies and that courts should balance students’ right of expression with school administrators’ duty to protect students from advocacy of illegal activity. Where does that leave us here? Nothing illegal being advocated, but there’s bound to be some minor disruption as pro-Obama kids take exception to the message. My guess: Because the message is quintessentially political and judges love to slobber over political speech being at the core of the First Amendment (except in campaign-finance cases, of course), they’ll have no choice but to rule for the kid. Sue, Billy. Sue like the wind. Click the image to watch.


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Bong Hits and Terrorist

Can’t have it both ways.

Kini on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

Uh, as much as I like the shirt…

That is NOT the writing of a 5th grade student… my guess? Mom “helped” him…

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

I still trying to figure out what is actually wrong with what is being said on the T-Shirt???

Anyone….??

Beuller…???

Beuller……?????

Dale in Atlanta on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

shirt is pretty stupid. kids at that age shouldnt be distracting other students with their political attire. he’s only in 5th grade and is likely brainwashed by his father.

venicesurfer on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

Someone should tell the school administrators to break out their checkbook.

GarandFan on September 23, 2008 at 1:01 PM

this is why i support uniforms for ALL public schools so we dont have distractions like this.

venicesurfer on September 23, 2008 at 1:01 PM

he’s only in 5th grade and is likely brainwashed by his father.

venicesurfer on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

As opposed to being brainwashed by his teachers?

db on September 23, 2008 at 1:02 PM

Libby Weaver is hot. Local news anchors are a mixed bag but some of them are not bad. Oh yeah, the shirt. Meh. Doesn’t seem like a big deal.

D0WNT0WN on September 23, 2008 at 1:02 PM

They succeeded in getting him a national forum to display his message. Good work!

RBMN on September 23, 2008 at 1:02 PM

I know the kids is holding the shirt out but that shirt looks too huge to fit him.

Queasy on September 23, 2008 at 1:02 PM

Maybe if the shirt was tie-dyed, that would have made the difference.

pilamaye on September 23, 2008 at 1:03 PM

looks like you could fit the kid’s entire class into the shirt, too.

Mike D. on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

I’m pessimistic about this one. That shirt could fit 2 fifth graders. I think it would be distracting to the class. The kid would look like Sigmund the Seamonster wearing it.

shick on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

The “Sue billy, sue like the wind” gave me the much needed morning chuckle

spacekicker on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

Uh, as much as I like the shirt…

That is NOT the writing of a 5th grade student… my guess? Mom “helped” him…

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

Big deal. The kid either believes in the message or lost a bet. My money is on that he believes in the message.

Having said all of that, in one of the middle schools in my area, there’s a kid that goes to school every day with a different “free palestine” shirt. That school district has a strict policy about no writing on shirts. None. not even sports teams. I wonder how this is allowed.

john1schn on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

I’m all for free speech and for pointing out what a bad President Uh-uh-uh-bama would make, but…

The school has the right to regulate such things within their own doors, sadly to say. Allusions to terrorism are well within the bounds of what the school can prevent young children from being exposed to within the school.

ynot4tony2 on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

Meh. Just because I agree with the message doesn’t mean I approve of obnoxious little toe-rags trying to push people’s buttons. I don’t know why they allow t-shirts with messages at all; is a dress code unconstitutional?

S. Weasel on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

That shirt is huge! Doesn’t look like it would fit anyone smaller than Michael Moore…

bspoogeferd on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

Is that a shirt or a car cover? Sheesh! Looks like someone in that family needs to worry less about making t-shirts and more about their diet.

I teach. Our school has a dress code and specific standards. I don’t know where this one would fit in. Our students aren’t allowed to wear any type of beer slogans or tobacco-related merchandise. Also, they can’t wear drug-related stuff either, so all those lovely shirts of Tupac smoking a blunt aren’t allowed.

Kids need to be kids, not political billboards for their parents. A nine year-old doesn’t know crap about politics, aside what his parents tell him.

robblefarian on September 23, 2008 at 1:05 PM

Encouraging. My 15-year-old public school student told me out of the blue yesterday that he can’t support Obama (he does not like Bush and supported Kerry in 2004.) I asked him why and he said we can’t afford socialized medicine!

rockmom on September 23, 2008 at 1:06 PM

he’s only in 5th grade and is likely brainwashed by his father.

venicesurfer on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM
As opposed to being brainwashed by his teachers?

db on September 23, 2008 at 1:02 PM

The brainwashing is wrong in both cases. The first thought I had when I saw this shirt was, “poor kid’s never going to be able to think for himself.” Honestly, if it was the other way around and the kid had a pro-hopeandchange T-shirt we’d all be disturbed by how the kid’s parents are using the kid as a pawn in their political game.

Zetterson on September 23, 2008 at 1:06 PM

The school wanted the children to dress patriotically…

Do they also teach them about Global Warming? Climate Change?
Do they teach them how to balance a check book?

Were there any tshirts depicting McCain or Palin in a negative way?

Kini on September 23, 2008 at 1:06 PM

He wasn’t suspended for wearing the shirt, but for willful refusal to obey the instructions of the school administration (to stop wearing the shirt, at least so that it could be read).

Hey, did you know that Sarah Palin fired a state trooper for refusing to ban books and make victims pay for their own rape kits?

The Monster on September 23, 2008 at 1:07 PM

Interesting part is that the school is saying the word TERRORIST is offensive?

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:07 PM

Is that a shirt or a blimp?

ninjapirate on September 23, 2008 at 1:07 PM

Love the shirt- The delivery, not so much. Fifth graders aren’t that political.

x-wing on September 23, 2008 at 1:07 PM

It’s disruptive. He’s a fifth grader. He deserved to be suspended. And, no, he doesn’t have any first amendment right.

I forgot the name of the high school armband case from the 60s/70s. The court focused on the fact that the student was older and the wearing of a black armband was not disruptive to the learning process.

Blake on September 23, 2008 at 1:08 PM

Here’s the link to the local article. It gives more information:

http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/sep/22/aurora-fifth-grader-suspended-obama-terrorist-t-sh/

hooligan on September 23, 2008 at 1:08 PM

But on the many liberal college campuses across this nation, a student publication can have a headline which reads “F**K BUSH”.

Nice. Very nice.

madmonkphotog on September 23, 2008 at 1:08 PM

Assuming that’s not the kid’s shirt, my guess is he’s got one really, really big parent or older sibling. Probably need to do up a “Vote McCain or I’ll Sit On You” T-shirt to go along with this one.

jon1979 on September 23, 2008 at 1:08 PM

The brainwashing is wrong in both cases.

Zetterson on September 23, 2008 at 1:06 PM

Parents are supposed to keep their political opinions hidden?

MarkTheGreat on September 23, 2008 at 1:09 PM

One of the reasons why I’m learning to like the idea of school uniforms.

ScottMcC on September 23, 2008 at 1:09 PM

Classic political speech issue.

Kid wins. Easily.

The whole “disobedience” bit is a non-starter – he disobeyed an unconstitutional order, which is his right.

And yet another reason to home school or send children to private schools.

ChePibe on September 23, 2008 at 1:09 PM

Love the shirt- The delivery, not so much. Fifth graders aren’t that political.

x-wing on September 23, 2008 at 1:07 PM

That’s painting with a pretty broad brush. When I was 11, you couldn’t tear me away from the Watergate hearings.

john1schn on September 23, 2008 at 1:09 PM

As much as the kid would like to call this free speech, it is disruptive in the school. There are dress codes in public schools that state very clearly what is and what is not acceptable.

If he wore a pro-McCain shirt, or maybe just a simple “nObama” it would have been different. When you through buzzwords like terrorists in the mix, that is where the problem lies.

Let’s keep school a place to learn, not to make provocative political statements. The kids these days aren’t learning enough as it is.

jdoubleu on September 23, 2008 at 1:10 PM

Meh. Just because I agree with the message doesn’t mean I approve of obnoxious little toe-rags trying to push people’s buttons. I don’t know why they allow t-shirts with messages at all; is a dress code unconstitutional?

S. Weasel on September 23, 2008 at 1:04 PM

Much agreed. Keep the writing off all clothing in school. The teachers already have enough to do with enough distractions.

dedalus on September 23, 2008 at 1:11 PM

Obviously the ACLU will come down on the side of the kid. Just like they did April 2005:

After ACLU Intervention on Behalf of Student Wearing Anti-Bush T-shirt, Broward School Board Agrees to Amend Code of Conduct

The ACLU helped Justin Cambest of Broward County, Florida vindicate his right to wear this shirt to school.

The case arose in October 2004, when Justin Cambest, a senior at Nova High School in Broward County, was forced to remove his t-shirt with a picture of President Bush that reads “International Terrorist” after a few students and a school staff member claimed to be offended.

wise_man on September 23, 2008 at 1:11 PM

The Warren Court standard…

…I’m shocked…shocked, I tell you…I didn’t know that the Warren Court had a standard….

…the teachers unions are doing what they can to politicize the classroom…so, keep the “I(heart) Obama” and Green Party t’s out, keep the “Obama=terrorism” t’s out, even keep the Confederate battle flag t’s out…no because we want to keep from “offending” — some people, after all, use offence and can be offended at will, the way people can swallow air and burp — but to keep their noses in their math books.

History, literature and civics textbooks are skewed…but let one kid come to school in a “Heathen, you shall drown in a lake of fire” t-shirt and we get reportage. It’d be nice if these reporters — with minds as wide as an ocean but as shallow as the dew — would dig for their suppers once in a while.

Puritan1648 on September 23, 2008 at 1:11 PM

judges love to slobber over political speech being at the core of the First Amendment

You are sooooo not cynical. Me, I’ve been saying for years that judges think the First Amendment protects core pornographic speech.

Attila (Pillage Idiot) on September 23, 2008 at 1:12 PM

I am sure it could be said the shirt was disruptive. Could be said, that is. However if there was a disruption over the shirt, isn’t it logical to say the offended parties who actually disrupted school are at fault? The shirt advocates nothing illegal and is not intended solely to insult sensibilities unless you are an over sensitive Obamabot.

My question about this issue – how many kids, fifth grade or other – have worn shirts like these to school and encountered no issues whatsoever?

RDuke on September 23, 2008 at 1:12 PM

Yawn.

*eats*

Grue in the Attic on September 23, 2008 at 1:13 PM

I side with the school. Part of the undermining of our culture and politics is the steady erosion of authority. The school, according to the report, gave him reasonable choices. He chose the consequence of suspension. Brave. Whining about the consequence afterward is cowardly. In this way, it becomes a stunt, not a stand.

RushBaby on September 23, 2008 at 1:13 PM

If it said “McCain a terrorists best friend” everyone here would hate it.

Stupid shirt, interesting legal question.

Dash on September 23, 2008 at 1:14 PM

As has been noted, the kid wasn’t suspended because he wore the shirt…

…he was suspended because he didn’t obey the administrator.

As much as I am against Obama, I have no problem with this kid being told to take the shirt off or turn it inside out.

The only issue here is whether or not (probably not!) the school would have done the same thing if the kid wore an anti-McCain or anti-Bush shirt.

Religious_Zealot on September 23, 2008 at 1:14 PM

My sixth-grade son could blow a lot of people away by what he understands about politics.

But how much deep thought does it take to see Obama’s relationship to Bill Ayers, or his endorsement by Hamas, or his claim to oppose intercepting terrorist communications, and come up with the idea that Obama is a friend to terrorists?

Reminds me of Jean Garton’s son, who accidentally wandered into the room while his pro-choice mom was watching “The Silent Scream.”

He said, “Who broke the baby?”

Changed her forever. She wrote a book by that title.

justincase on September 23, 2008 at 1:16 PM

Uh, as much as I like the shirt…

That is NOT the writing of a 5th grade student… my guess? Mom “helped” him…

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

I don’t know what difference it would make if mom indeed helped him. He is still the one that wore it. Would it have made any difference if he would have bought it at K-mart?

That said, like it or not, kids “rights” are and should be limited until their little brains full of mush can also understand the other side of the equation. Even though I agree with what the shirt says, there are no rights without corresponding responsibilities and I don’t think 5th graders are keen on that idea yet. There is also the right to keep and bear arms but I would not encourage allowing fifth-graders to come to school with pistols.

Maxx on September 23, 2008 at 1:16 PM

It is over the top, he should be suspended. Same should apply if about any person. It has no place in public education.

Wade on September 23, 2008 at 1:16 PM

Is America Smarter than a 5th Grader?

Lets hope that America get’s this election right..

I don’t trust my life to Obama.(Remember life is above his pay grade)

Chakra Hammer on September 23, 2008 at 1:17 PM

Back in ’84, a number of us in middle school made up “Reagan” signs and such in the back of the classroom and hid them from the teachers knowing they’d be taken away.

Don’t care for the kid’s shirt, but if the “GWB=world’s biggest terrorist” shirts can be worn, why not this?

Plus I bet there is more to this story than meets the eye. Was the kid a bad kid, or a trouble maker, in general – someone who raised the hackles of the teachers on a daily basis? Or is this one of those zero-tolerance cases where political diversity is not allowed?

pt on September 23, 2008 at 1:17 PM

Father.Of.The.Year! (OK, he’s a close second when compared with The Dude)

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on September 23, 2008 at 1:18 PM

The school finds the word “Terrorist” offensive?

Hey Daxx, for your next shirt…..

Obama: A Jihadist Best Friend

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on September 23, 2008 at 1:19 PM

jdoubleu on September 23, 2008 at 1:10 PM

So, in YOUR opinion its OK for the school to decide on what speech is acceptable, and which is not? What political statements are OK, and which cross some imaginary line?

How is that then FREE SPEECH?

My Son, a Senior in High School in Parker CO, almost got thrown out of his English class 2 weeks ago, when his English Teacher, while teaching Beowolf, made the statement that “the Military made people into jerks”. As the Son of TWO Vets, and Grandson of 2 more, he took exception to that statement, told the teacher she was wrong and offensive, and needed to appologise…. when she would not, he went to the administration, which FORCED her to appologise…

But she could not figure out why what she said was wrong… and it was a Pro Forma forced appology… kinda a I’m sorry if I offended anyone out there type of appology…

Welcome to the Denver School systems…

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:21 PM

Fifth graders aren’t that political.

Take them one at a time. This guy picked suspension over changing, not his dad.

Spirit of 1776 on September 23, 2008 at 1:21 PM

The school finds the word “Terrorist” offensive?
Dr.Cwac.Cwac on September 23, 2008 at 1:19 PM

…. I kill you! …..

wise_man on September 23, 2008 at 1:22 PM

I doubt the kid came up with this on his own and it sounds like his father’s being provocative. I can sympathize with where he’s coming from, but he shouldn’t be dragging the kid into his political arguments.

JammieWearingFool on September 23, 2008 at 1:23 PM

If you have one kid wearing a shirt calling Obama a terrorist you’ll undoubtedly end up with another kid wearing a shirt calling McCain a racist. Then you have fist fights breaking out all over the school.

Blake on September 23, 2008 at 1:23 PM

So, when will Bill Ayers start the Aurora Annenberg Challenge to set this little motherf*cker straight?

/sarc

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on September 23, 2008 at 1:23 PM

Grade school is no place for parents to use their children to make political statements. Even if I agree with the statement that wrong from either side.

That boy doesnt know or care about what that tshirt means, his parents should be ashamed.

HoosierCon on September 23, 2008 at 1:23 PM

WHAT Allah?! Since the shirt upsets the hordes of pro-Obama kiddies, that’s basis for limiting free speech? And is that the same standard if someone wears a pro-Obama shirt?

The shirt’s tacky, however the boy did what he was assigned to do. There’s nothing vulgar, obscene, or illegal on his shirt. Sue the pants off of them.

bloghooligan on September 23, 2008 at 1:24 PM

People keep saying that the shirt’s disruptive … so what? It’s only disruptive in that it chafes rabid Obama supporters, and that’s their problem, not his. Part of living in this country is being around speech and ideas that contradict your own. If you can’t handle that, grow the hell up and get over it.

Besides, the controversy here is probably providing far more real world learning opportunities than the bland, ultra-pc crap that you usually see in classrooms.

TheUnrepentantGeek on September 23, 2008 at 1:25 PM

I just wish the kid has said that Obama is a domestic terrorist’s friend since that would have been 100% true. To say he is a terrorist’s “best friend” is impossible to substantiate and weakens his case.

Buy Danish on September 23, 2008 at 1:26 PM

to those who would question the appropriateness of the word”terrorists” in 5 th grade. I would submit that it is no more wrong than teachers teaching about Islam and have the students practice the Islamic habits as many schools are doing, or have the kids read” Bozo has Two Mommies “type crap.

MNDavenotPC on September 23, 2008 at 1:26 PM

You go. boy.

The shirt stated an opinion. Our Constitution does not have age/IQ/location limits in it.

davidk on September 23, 2008 at 1:26 PM

I’m more worried about our college-aged kids being taught by rabid leftists and not called on their biases:
http://mommylife.net/archives/2008/09/antipalin_assig.html

hoosiermama on September 23, 2008 at 1:27 PM

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:21 PM

Apparently you don’t have to have much common sense to teach these days….

/CaptOb

*eats*

Grue in the Attic on September 23, 2008 at 1:27 PM

The frank and passionate exchange of ideas and ideology have no place in the public schools……

EricPWJohnson on September 23, 2008 at 1:28 PM

The ACLU helped Justin Cambest of Broward County, Florida vindicate his right to wear this shirt to school.

Sounds more like the school caved into the ACLU shake down.

Blake on September 23, 2008 at 1:28 PM

Take them one at a time. This guy picked suspension over changing, not his dad.

Trust me–kids don’t mind getting suspended. A little time off from school means a whole lotta time boning up on Halo. Shoulda stuck his rear-end in ISS (in school suspension) and then let him wear his billboard.

robblefarian on September 23, 2008 at 1:28 PM

This 5th grader shouldn’t be advocating political positions – he should be in class learning about Chlamydia and masturbation.

gwelf on September 23, 2008 at 1:28 PM

If it said “McCain a terrorists best friend” everyone here would hate it.

Stupid shirt, interesting legal question.

Dash on September 23, 2008 at 1:14 PM

If he would have been allowed wear that he would have gotten a “A” by the teacher loons.

grapeknutz on September 23, 2008 at 1:29 PM

This case never should have happened. In this day and age, if this school doesn’t have school uniforms, then they have a clear, dinleated dress code. It’s very simple–either the shirt fits within the dress code’s guidelines, or it doesn’t.

This should be a very simple case. If the school found the T-shirt objectionable vis-a-vis the guidelines, then there is no case. However, if the administrators just didn’t agree with the shirt, then I hope he wins the case.

Oh, here’s a question: Will the ACLU take up the kid’s case?

m064404 on September 23, 2008 at 1:30 PM

I actually had a teacher pick an argument with me when I was in fourth grade because I had a Nixon bumpersticker on my bookbag. He wasn’t happy when McGovern lost 49 states.

My parents were Democrats but still went apeshit on the guy, he was suspended, and in order to save his mental health, they moved me to another class. I proceeded to mess with his head by giving him the Damien look every time he saw me for several years after that.

JammieWearingFool on September 23, 2008 at 1:30 PM

Bong Hits and Terrorist

Can’t have it both ways.

Kini on September 23, 2008 at 1:00 PM

Well, I guess if you simplify it in that way . . . cept you’re not exactly being honest about your comparison.

One is advocating an illegal activity. The other is only speaks of Obama’s relationship to Ayers.

(Oh wait, by terrorist did you assume Islamic? For shame!)

geckomon on September 23, 2008 at 1:31 PM

This boy needs access to an Annenberg Challenge grant to help him resist oppression.

Loxodonta on September 23, 2008 at 1:32 PM

I brainwash my kids daily. It’s kinda my job, ain’t it? There’s plenty of time for them to become smarter than I am when they are teens.

pugwriter on September 23, 2008 at 1:33 PM

If you have one kid wearing a shirt calling Obama a terrorist you’ll undoubtedly end up with another kid wearing a shirt calling McCain a racist. Then you have fist fights breaking out all over the school.

Blake on September 23, 2008 at 1:23 PM

Then you talk about keeping your temper, and suspend them for FIGHTING.

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:34 PM

If it said “McCain a terrorists best friend” everyone here would hate it.

Stupid shirt, interesting legal question.

Dash on September 23, 2008 at 1:14 PM

And? He should be allowed to wear that shirt too, even if I’m not a fan of the sentiment.

A truly talented teacher would use the controversy surrounding such shirts to initiate discussion and dialogue. Direct confrontation over this issue displays a blind need to follow arbitrary (and possibly unconstitutional) rules without thinking about the opportunities presented by such a situation.

Of course, I’m one of those crazy people that thinks that school should be about the pursuit of actual knowledge and the refinement of critical thinking, not dumping just enough rote memorization to pass a standardized test.

TheUnrepentantGeek on September 23, 2008 at 1:35 PM

Vote in the Fox poll

faraway on September 23, 2008 at 1:35 PM

OH, and this is the SAME Denver School system who let High School kids out of class so they could attend the Illegal Immigration Marches here last year.

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:35 PM

79% say he has right to wear shirt

faraway on September 23, 2008 at 1:36 PM

Odd they chose a reporter named Christine AYERS for a story on terrorists and free speech.

Did William Ayers and Obomber phone in and ask for her to do the story sympathetically for them?

Why no questions from the reporter about who the ‘terrorists’ referred to were?

Also I’ll bet pro-Obomber t-shirts are all the rage in many Denver schools. Kids are so easily influenced to jump on the latest trend. I’m guessing many teachers would let those t-shirts in as long as they benefited Obomber.

rigdown on September 23, 2008 at 1:37 PM

gwelf on September 23, 2008 at 1:28 PM

Eeewww….

Made me laugh.

tru2tx on September 23, 2008 at 1:37 PM

Bill Ayers is his friend. Obama said so himself.

TheHat on September 23, 2008 at 1:38 PM

Nothing like a good smear by the reporter Ayers, before we get into the story.

Dad was involved in some controversial anti-abortion rallies.

faraway on September 23, 2008 at 1:39 PM

A truly talented teacher would use the controversy surrounding such shirts to initiate discussion and dialogue. Direct confrontation over this issue displays a blind need to follow arbitrary (and possibly unconstitutional) rules without thinking about the opportunities presented by such a situation.

Of course, I’m one of those crazy people that thinks that school should be about the pursuit of actual knowledge and the refinement of critical thinking, not dumping just enough rote memorization to pass a standardized test.

TheUnrepentantGeek on September 23, 2008 at 1:35 PM

Would be nice, eh?

*eats*

Grue in the Attic on September 23, 2008 at 1:39 PM

Looks like the t-shirt belongs to the person sitting to the right of the kid…

Nolamom67 on September 23, 2008 at 1:42 PM

I think the shirt was inappropriate. The theme was patriotism not politics. However, it could be argued that a true patriot would vote for McCain! It all depends on whether or not kids have been allowed to wear political shirts for the other side.

Rose on September 23, 2008 at 1:44 PM

Kids will ALWAYS get ideas from their parents. So what. I agree the T-shirt is way too big & silly to be wearing to school. There are kids who wear slogan shirts to our school here in rural ND. A lot of it is conservative based stuff. Our principal is probably very liberal from what I can tell-doesn’t actually do anything & spouts crap that makes no sense.
My high school kids are very well versed in politics-probably bcs of their parents, but they can discuss the issues on their own & they make a hell of a lot more sense than ‘Uncle Joe’ Biden & Oblammo.
I encourage my students to scrutinize politics in scientific matters-i.e. global warming.
Politics drives everything. So I would say if a kid wants to wear an Obama or McCain button-let him. The T-shirt is pretty silly & inflammatory, however.

Badger40 on September 23, 2008 at 1:46 PM

5th Grader? Covered by the 1st Amendment…?

Not in my home! They have the right to remain silent, especially when I’m working.

CliffHanger on September 23, 2008 at 1:48 PM

When I was Billy’s Dax’s age, I was better informed about politics and current events than most teachers I knew. Hate me if you want, but I won all the current events quizzes from elementary through high school and would correct my liberal teachers when necessary.

My FDR Democrat parents became Goldwater Republicans and I grew up calling Reagan “Uncle Ronnie.” Mom read National Review and listened to the mostly liberal talk radio of the pre-Rush era — actually, she listened and shouted “bull hockey” back at the radio.

The values my parents gave me were tested repeatedly and not found wanting. I raised my only child the same way.

Right on, Dax, right on.

Terrie on September 23, 2008 at 1:50 PM

I would let my kids wear “NOBAMA: Keep the Change” shirts to school (5th and 6th grades), if for no other reason than the fact their teachers have been deluging them with pro-Hillary (and now, pro-Obama) propaganda for the past two years. If the teachers want politics out of the Elementary classroom, they should stop indoctrinating them into Lib-speak (they’ll get enough of that nonsense in college, I’m sure.)

VastRightWingConspirator on September 23, 2008 at 1:50 PM

The shirt is inappropriate. School officials handled the situation appropriately.

Our children are not political props and these parents are crassly using their son to make a political statement.

CliffHanger on September 23, 2008 at 1:54 PM

Romeo13 on September 23, 2008 at 1:21 PM

Why do we need to grant 5th graders free speech in school?

They are there to learn, not to have forms of protest.

It is unfortunate that our educational system is dominated by liberals.

The real problem here though, is that he was being disobedient to the rules by wearing the shirt. He was given the opportunity to reverse the shirt, and declined- further proving that it was a stunt to disrupt the normal school day.

Your example does not prove or disprove the point her. That teacher was out of line, so is this boy.

jdoubleu on September 23, 2008 at 1:54 PM

From the looks of the picture they would have been justified in suspending him for safety reasons. That shirt must be 10 sizes to large. So consequently he was wearing a costume not clothing and thus was disrupting the classroom.

meci on September 23, 2008 at 1:55 PM

One word… “uniforms”.

Or at the very least, two words… “dress code”.

CliffHanger on September 23, 2008 at 1:58 PM

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