Brent Bozell

The 1969 Supreme Court case Tinker vs. Des Moines Independent Community School District established that students have free speech in schools, as long as it doesn't disrupt school discipline. According to Education Week, teachers complained that students who had received the roughly 300 dolls that were handed out were throwing the dolls across classrooms, using them to plug toilets and in other ways causing serious disruptions in the school day.

There are no reports of any legal or disciplinary actions taken against the students responsible for vandalism.

--In Michigan, the Students for Life chapter at Eastern Michigan University applied for student fee funding to host a display on campus called the Genocide Awareness Project, a traveling photo-mural exhibit which compares the contemporary genocide of abortion to other forms of genocide. EMU denied the funding request because they deemed the photos of the aborted babies and the event as too controversial and one-sided. But they've granted money to left-wing activist groups discussing "welfare rights," as well as race-issues and abortion rights groups.

Of course, all the old anti-prayer bias remains. In Arkansas, the Riverside School district in Lake City decided not to allow a sixth-grade graduation this year. Saying a prayer at this ceremony had never been an issue before. Predictably, the school district decided to cancel the graduation ceremony after just one parent came out and protested the prayer -- and the school received a letter from the American Civil Liberties Union.

Sometimes, there's still a win. A Texas state judge has just ruled that banners displayed at football games by cheerleaders at Kountze High School quoting Bible verses were "constitutionally permissible." At first, the school district stopped the banners after the Freedom From Religion Foundation protested. But after a public meeting in February, the school board of trustees issued the weakest of resolutions in which it wrote that the district was not required to ban messages on school banners that displayed "fleeting expressions of community sentiment solely because the source or origin of such messages is religious."

That "fleeting expressions" language can spur a smile. Just as federal judges have ruled that it's acceptable for broadcast television networks to air "fleeting" expressions of profanity while children watch at home, schools in religious communities might allow impressionable youth to be exposed to "fleeting" expressions in favor of God.

L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. To find out more about Brent Bozell III, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.

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Brent Bozell

Founder and President of the Media Research Center, Brent Bozell runs the largest media watchdog organization in America.
 
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