Daniel Doherty
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It’s not always fun and easy being a young Republican, let alone an enthusiastic Mitt Romney supporter. Whoa:

The parents of the Charles Carroll High School student ridiculed and ordered by her teacher to remove a t-shirt supporting Mitt Romney sued the teacher and school district on Friday, claiming the act violated the girl's civil rights.

Filed in federal court in Philadelphia, the suit says the district ignored Samantha Pawlucy's right to free speech, let other students threaten and harass her and subjected her "to emotional distress, simply because she exercised her First Amendment rights."

Fernando Gallard, a spokesman for the district, said it would not comment on the lawsuit.

Pawlucy, a 16-year-old sophomore from Port Richmond, drew national headlines from the furor that erupted when she wore a pink "Romney-Ryan" shirt during a dress-down day at school in September.

According to the lawsuit, Pawlucy had worn the shirt all day when she walked into geometry teacher Lynette Gaymon's classroom.

The teacher allegedly told the teen that Charles Carroll was a "Democratic" school and that her shirt was akin to one spouting a logo for the Ku Klux Klan. She ordered Pawlucy to remove the shirt, then enlisted an aide who tried to draw an X through the candidates' name on the shirt.

Pawlucy's parents complained to school officials and the story went viral.

Gaymon later publicly apologized to the girl. But Pawlucy claims she endured ongoing harassment and threats and was unable to return to the school.

What kind of “educator” acts this way? Sure, teachers can certainly disagree with the political opinions of their students. But to publicly embarrass -- and ridicule -- a young girl for supporting a major party candidate for president is beyond comprehension. As I understand it, this geometry teacher doesn’t even attempt to engage her student in any type of meaningful discussion or dialogue. Instead, she reflexively resorts to fear tactics and intimidation. And while it’s difficult to imagine filing a full-blown lawsuit against my teacher if I found myself in a similar situation, I can fully understand why the student’s family believed this was necessary. The audaciousness of this “grown-up’s” behavior is simply astonishing.

Meanwhile, it’s comforting to know how taxpayer dollars are being spent these days: ridiculing young minds and bullying teenagers. Then again, I guess we really shouldn’t be surprised.

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Daniel Doherty

Daniel Doherty is Townhall's Deputy News Editor. Follow him on Twitter @danpdoherty.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography