I don’t know how many of you have been following the Alaskan high school student’s court case objecting to his suspension from school for unfurling a banner mystically exhorting “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” at a “school sponsored” but off campus event for the 2000 passage of the Olympic torch. As an old high school and college news editor, I’ve followed the issue of school regulated free speech over the years. This particular case is troubling on the surface; the expression did not take place on school property, the speech in question may or may not have been a pro-drug message (okay, of course it was a pro-drug message. So?), and the punishment extended to the student’s family (father was fired from his school district job for supporting his son’s case. He was in maintenance not adminstration. The father later won a $200,000 suit against the school district).
I haven’t gotten to the Court’s web site to read the decisions so I’ll refrain from commenting on the law until then but…shades of things to come I am afraid. CBS News link on Court Speech cases below.